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Subject: "Bill could pull state out of 'No Child' law"     Previous Topic | Next Topic
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Conferences Educational Press No Child Left Behind Topic #11
Reading Topic #11
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Mar-28-05, 00:23 AM (EST)
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"Bill could pull state out of 'No Child' law"
From the Minneapolis Star, Wednesday, March 23, 2005. See https://www.startribune.com/stories/587/5307703.html
Bill could pull state out of 'No Child' law

By Norman Draper

A bill that could drop Minnesota out of the No Child Left Behind law passed its last Senate committee hurdle Tuesday, winning unanimous approval from the Finance Committee.

The bill could come up for a vote in the full Senate as early as next week.

A companion bill in the House still awaits a committee hearing.

Unlike the anti-No Child Left Behind resolutions that passed the Senate on Monday, this bill has teeth. It would require numerous changes in the federal testing and accountability law, or else the state would nullify the law and risk the potential loss of as much as $224 million a year in federal funds. But bill sponsor Sen. Steve Kelley, DFL-Hopkins, said it's uncertain whether the federal government would cut off that revenue. He said it might cut off much lesser amounts, for instance, the $50 million allocated to Minnesota for No Child Left Behind or the $90 million for Title I funding earmarked for the education of poor children. Or it might do nothing.

"The number could be zero, because by then the revolt among the states could be so widespread and so serious that the federal government wouldn't dare take the money away from the states," Kelley said. His bill would require a major reworking of the law to make its testing and school-accountability goals more modest.

The goal of the federal law is to have every child proficient in math and reading by 2014. Schools that don't meet annual test results goals for several years in a row face sanctions that range from providing children with transportation to other schools to state takeover.
Norman Draper is at ndraper@startribune.com

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