Boston Globe: New US law weighs on some rural schools

Anand Vaishnav reports on the impact of the massive new federal education law, No Child Left Behind.

Vermont sees its entire system of public education at stake. If it reports test scores exactly as the law requires – with no consideration for the low numbers of students tested in some classrooms – 80 percent of Vermont’s 350 schools could be identified as failing, state officials estimate.

The “one size, fits all” approach to education standards taken by No Child Left Behind leaves a lot to be desired. Another requirement of the law, hiring only state-licensed teachers, limits the potential teacher pool arbitrarily based on credentials alone rather than skills, experience, and capability.

Elsewhere, T.R. Reid reports in the Washington Post this morning that seven states have adopted four day school weeks to help trim expenses.

“You get an immediate 20 percent cut in your food services budget, 20 percent in transportation and some savings in energy and custodial costs,” said Robb Rankin, superintendent of the East Grand School District, which operates Granby Elementary and four other schools on the four-day plan.

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