Alaska Receives Partial Waiver of No Child Left Behind Act
FAIRBANKS — The federal government granted Alaska a one-year waiver from increasing student proficiency standards through the No Child Left Behind Act.
The U.S. Department of Education is allowing the state to use the 2010-2011 proficiency targets in calculating its progress in the coming school year.
Rep. Bob Miller, D-Fairbanks, released a statement in favor of the progress toward a larger waiver from the “one-size-fits-all requirements.” He introduced a resolution prompting the governor to apply for a waiver during the legislative session.
“The state’s efforts to set its own standards and take the opportunity to opt out of No Child Left Behind are working, and the federal government’s decision to grant the first part of our request is an encouraging step in Alaska’s efforts to maintain local control of our schools and our children’s education,” he said.
Fairbanks North Star Borough School District Superintendent Pete Lewis said the partial waiver is a step in the right direction.
“There will be more schools who will make (annual measurable objective) progress,” he said, but there are still dozens of targets for the schools to reach.
“The system is one that needs to be adjusted,” he said.
The State Board of Education and Early Development will consider a regulation allowing the waiver at its July 24 meeting.
The partial waiver will allow the state to prepare for a more comprehensive waiver application, which it will submit Sept. 6. The waiver would give the power of measuring student success to the state if the state can develop a system of accountability.
The measurements of adequate yearly progress from 2010-2011 will be released in August.
Contact Fairbanks Daily News-Miner staff writer Reba Lean at 907-459-7523.