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Miscellaneous & Overarching (Misc.)
NCLB Reauthorization

To better inform the national debate on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) reauthorization, ECS collected and synthesized recommendations by national organizations to improve the federal law.

ECS' database is organized around 16 issue areas that captured most recommendations. Some organizations did not offer recommendations for all issues, at least according to our analysis. And several recommendations appear more than once since they applied to multiple issue areas.

The summary and full text of all organizations' original recommendations for  Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.) are listed in this report. Please see the main page for additional reports and sources for the database.

Highlights
(See Abbreviation Key at end of table)

Organizations that addressed this issue: 10 of 15
AASA; AFT; Comm. NCLB; CCSSO; ECS; NAESP; NASBE; NCSL; NGA; and NSBA

Organizations that did not address this issue5 of 15
BCSA; Ed Trust; FEA; NASSP; and NEA

Comments
ECS created a Miscellaneous/Overarching category to capture recommendations that were broader statements about NCLB and education reform. We chose not to exclude these suggestions, for they contribute to a comprehensive discussion of the nation's efforts to improve schools and the education system. We did not attempt, however, to summarize this section since the proposals and comments ran the gamut and often had little in common.


Visit ECS' Database on NCLB Reauthorization main page for more information, explanations and access to organizations' original reports. Please note that ECS plans to expand the database as more information becomes available.

Database Last Updated: July 2007

This database was created and compiled by Mary Fulton, ECS policy analyst.
For questions and comments: 303.299.3679 or mfulton@ecs.org

NCLB Reauthorization : American Association of School Administrators (AASA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Establish independent board to review change and waiver requests to state NCLB plans and federal responses.  
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Ensure transparent and fair federal oversight of ESEA by establishing an independent review board for all state requests regarding changes and waivers to state plans and all federal action on those requests.  
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require Education Department to disclose rulings made on state plans, including change and waiver requests.  
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Ensure transparent and fair federal oversight of ESEA by requiring the U.S. Department of Education to disclose every ruling made on state plans and state requests for plan changes and waivers in ESEA programs.  
Misc. 3 - Summary of Recommendation Limit federal government's ability to add program requirements without appropriate regulatory process or new legislation.  
Misc. 3 - Full Recommendation Ensure transparent and fair federal oversight of ESEA by limiting the ability of the federal government to capriciously add requirements to federal programs without a timely and meaningful regulatory process or new legislation.  
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : American Federation of Teachers (AFT)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Maintain closing achievement gap focus, set challenging but attainable goals and hold all students and schools accountable for results.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation

Overarching accountability recommendations by AASA:
a) Maintain focus on closing the achievement gap
b) Set challenging but demonstrably attainable student achievement goals
c) Produce accurate accountability decisions that include all student subgroups and hold large and small schools accountable for their performance.

.

Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Business Coalition for Student Achievement (BCSA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Commission on No Child Left Behind (Comm. NCLB)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Allow parents and others to hold districts, states and the Education Department accountable for implementing NCLB.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Allow parents and other concerned parties to hold districts, states and the Department of Education accountable for faithfully implementing the requirements of NCLB through enhanced enforcement options with the state and the Department.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation

CCSSO’s goal for NCLB reauthorization is to prepare every child for postsecondary education, work and citizenship. Broad recommendations include:  

  • Increased state and local support and autonomy for standards, assessments, accountability, teacher quality and data systems.
  • Building state and local capacity to improve low-performing districts and schools
  • Increased investment in research, innovation, technical assistance and collaboration to inform standards-based reforms.

Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation

The Council of Chief State School Officers’ goal for NCLB reauthorization is to move beyond no child left behind and toward every child a graduate — prepared for postsecondary education, work and citizenship in the 21st century. Achieving this goal will require a new state-federal partnership that includes the following broad recommendations for NCLB reauthorization:

  • Continued focus on accountability with increased support and greater autonomy for state and local implementation of standards-based reform. Includes standards, assessments, teacher quality and data systems.
  • Stronger focus on building state and local capacity to improve learning opportunities for all students and support interventions in consistently low-performing districts and schools
  • Increased investment in research, innovation, technical assistance and collaboration to inform state and local implementation of standards-based reforms.

Supporting Comments:

  • Enable and support state and local innovation must be hallmark of federal education law
  • Federal government should focus on accountability for results, with states and districts responsible for achieving those results based on innovative strategies and the most valid and reliable measures of student learning.
  • Raise standards to reflect 21st century knowledge and skills, improve assessments to better inform teaching and learning, invest in teacher and administrator professional development, improve data systems to help drive instruction, and build more valid accountability systems to value growth as well as status.
  • Increase the ability of state education agencies to provide assistance to all districts and schools and to intervene in consistently underperforming districts and schools. More funds must be directed to the state level to provide technical assistance and data-driven reform decisions and to support a wide variety of interventions and reforms.
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require peer review process for NCLB decisions to focus on technical assistance, full transparency, communication with states, consistency and timeliness.
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Ensure a strong state role in the selection of qualified peers (including peers from the states) for NCLB decisions and require a range of improvements in the peer review process to ensure a focus on technical assistance, full transparency, real communication and dialogue with states, consistency in peer review standards and outcomes across states, timeliness of feedback and results, dissemination of promising practices and more.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Education Commission of the States (ECS)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Embrace NCLB as a civil rights issue and commit to an unprecedented opportunity to raise expectations and narrow achievement gaps.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Embrace NCLB as a civil rights issue. At its core, NCLB is a civil rights issue and requires commitment. The 50th anniversary of Brown vs. Board of Education a stark reminder that school integration has not been accompanied by equality of student academic achievement across color and income lines. The clearly set goals of NCLB offer an unprecedented opportunity to raise expectations and significantly narrow achievement gaps that persist in U.S. schools.
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Do not retreat on NCLB's promises or possibilities, provide flexibility for states to meet goals and give credit for progress. 
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Do not allow the nation to retreat on the promises or possibilities of NCLB. Recognize the unique political and cultural contexts of states, and accord them the necessary flexibility to accomplish their goals. Keep pressure on states, but give them credit for moving forward on NCLB.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Education Trust (Ed Trust)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Forum on Educational Accountability (FEA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Ensure states have primary responsibility for assessing and improving school quality.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Ensure states have the primary responsibility for assessing the quality of their schools and effecting positive change in those that need improvement.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation NASBE’s guiding principles recommend: flexible assessments, alignment of state and federal accountability systems, use of growth models, teacher quality flexibility for high-need subjects, state capacity investment, and transparency between federal and state officials.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation At their core, NASBE’s guiding principles are about shifting from a law of absolutes to one that recognizes that a one-size-fits-all approach is difficult, if not impossible, to implement with fifty states operating fifty different education systems. Thus, the principles recommend: 
  • Flexibility in state assessment requirements (particularly for testing of special needs students such as students with disabilities and English language learner students). 
  • Better alignment of state and federal accountability systems, and allowing the use of growth model measures in all states. 
  • Accommodations in teacher qualifications and deference to state licensure procedures to take into high-need subjects. 
  • Increasing the federal investment in state capacity, which would solidify the state-federal partnership in improving low-performing schools. 
  • Transparency in all dealings, negotiations, and approvals between state and federal officials.
 
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Ensure federal requirements for state assessments help motivate student learning and monitor academic progress.
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Ensure federal requirements regarding state assessments help motivate each student to learn and monitor every student’s progress towards achieving a state’s academic performance standards.
Misc. 3 - Summary of Recommendation

Ensure federal accountability requirements are broadly supported, sustainable and adaptable, and include incentives for high performance.

Misc. 3 - Full Recommendation Ensure federal accountability requirements have broad political, business, and community support so they can be sustained over time, yet also be adaptable to necessary changes. Requirements also should have clear incentives and motivate students and educators to achieve high standards of performance.

 

Misc. 4 - Summary of Recommendation Require transparency and disclosure of NCLB flexibility and waivers granted to states by Education Department.
Misc. 4 - Full Recommendation Require openness, transparency and full disclosure with regard to any flexibility, waivers, exemptions, exceptions or accommodations granted by the U.S. Department of Education to individual states. Such information is necessary to allow states learn from each other’s strategies and successes and to ensure the integrity of the process.
Misc. 5 - Summary of Recommendation Grant special consideration to small, rural and limited resource schools in meeting NCLB requirements.
Misc. 5 - Full Recommendation Grant special consideration should to schools that are small, rural and/or have limited resources to meet NCLB requirements such as highly qualified teachers, supplemental services, school choice, etc.
Misc. 6 - Summary of Recommendation NASBE Overarching Policy Recommendation
Effective teacher quality policies must include: state education board authority over teacher licensure and certification; pre-service teacher education programs aligned with K-12 standards; rigorous and comprehensive teacher preparation programs; elimination of emergency certification; performance-based approval for teacher education programs; and state-established background check process.
Misc. 6 - Full Recommendation

Overarching Policy Recommendation by NASBE

Effective teacher quality policies must include
:

  • State board of education authority over teacher licensure and certification, ensuring that these policies are fully integrated with the state education program.
  • Pre-service teacher education programs that have clearly articulated standards aligned with K-12 systems. 
  • Requiring the completion of an approved teacher education program (or alternative teacher preparation program) and demonstrated knowledge of basic skills, content area, child development, methods of instruction, and classroom management.
  • The limitation and ultimate elimination of emergency certification.
  • State-developed proficiency-based approval for teacher education programs.
  • A state-established process to examine the background, including any criminal record, of all school personnel.
Misc. 7 - Summary of Recommendation NASBE Overarching Policy Recommendation
True high school reform should: focus on literacy, school structure, teacher quality and dropout prevention; eliminate need for remediation; allow students to access online and higher education courses; create high school and postsecondary continuum; and ensure relevant, challenging and integrated curricula.
Misc. 7 - Full Recommendation

Overarching Policy Recommendation by NASBE

True high school reform should

  • Focus on the core issues of literacy, high school structure (including use of the school day and the school calendar), teacher quality, and dropout prevention. 
  • Eliminate the need for remediation by the time a student earns a high school diploma. 
  • Provide an opportunity for students to access online and higher education course, which can facilitate the transition of those students who pursue a college education.
  • Have a better alignment of high school with postsecondary institutions into a seamless P-16 continuum. 
  • Ensure that high schools have relevant, challenging, and integrated curricula taught by qualified teachers who will manage the need for remediation.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Amend NCLB to revitalize state-federal partnership that ensures accountability for results and enables state/local innovation.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Amend NCLB to create a revitalized state-federal partnership that ensures state accountability for results and enables state and local innovation.

Such a partnership should respect diversity without causing division and foster unity without enshrining uniformity. The federal government should honor state systems that govern education by eliminating direct federal regulatory interaction with local education agencies and individual schools and limiting its direct interaction to states.
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Clarify conditions placed on states' federal funds for increasing student proficiency and limit financial consequences for not participating in NCLB.
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Revise NCLB defects by unambiguously stating any conditions placed on funds that the federal government appropriates to the states to help students gain proficiency and, second, by eliminating any coercion to participate in NCLB and limiting the punitive financial consequences should a state decide not to participate.
Misc. 3 - Summary of Recommendation Direct Education Department to adopt appeals process for flexibility, exemption and waiver requests that are denied.
Misc. 3 - Full Recommendation Direct the Education Department to adopt an appeals process, such as an independent peer review to hear appeals for denied requests for flexibility, exemptions and waivers. Such a process should include state legislators and state and local education officials. The secretary should be required to make timely reports on the disposition of such requests.
Misc. 4 - Summary of Recommendation Provide urban and rural communities with incentives and flexibility to meet NCLB requirements without prescriptive definitions and sanctions.
Misc. 4 - Full Recommendation Help states overcome the unique challenges urban and rural schools face by providing incentives and flexibility to these communities and stop punishing them with prescriptive definitions and sanctions. Congress should delegate flexibility authority to allow state governance systems the authority to recognize and respond to the unique conditions of urban and rural communities.
Misc. 5 - Summary of Recommendation Conduct research on distance learning to help students/schools meet NCLB’s goals, identify barriers to distance learning and disseminate research.
Misc. 5 - Full Recommendation Prompt federal government to conduct additional research on effective distance learning that would enable students and schools to meet NCLB’s goals, identify the barriers to distance learning and disseminate that research to the states and schools.
Misc. 6 - Summary of Recommendation Expand definition of "rural" for isolated districts/schools than was previously adopted by Education Department.
Misc. 6 - Full Recommendation Ensure flexibility granted to rural districts or schools includes a broader definition of “rural” than the definition used by the Education Department in granting the February 2004 flexibility for compliance with the highly qualified teacher requirement.
Misc. 7 - Summary of Recommendation Allow states flexibility to allocate costs of educating homeless students among districts.
Misc. 7 - Full Recommendation Amend NCLB and related federal laws to permit states to allocate the costs of educating homeless students among districts within their borders. States also should have the flexibility to resolve interstate cost allocations by agreement.
Misc. 8 - Summary of Recommendation Limit time districts are responsible for costs of homeless children's education in their new district.
Misc. 8 - Full Recommendation Limit the length of time a district in which a child originally became homeless is responsible for the costs of the child’s education in a new home district.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Education Association (NEA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Governors Association (NGA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Recognize and reinforce governors' role in education and require state education departments to consult with governors on NCLB.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation

Federal law should support gubernatorial authority and state responsibility for K-12 education. NCLB must recognize and reinforce the leading role of governors in education. Governors believe it is essential for state education agencies to adhere fully to the consultation requirements of NCLB. The U.S. Secretary of Education should require certification of compliance.

Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Create a P-16 alignment of NCLB's goals and requirements with other federal education and workforce laws.
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Create a P-16 alignment of the requirements, goals and outcomes of NCLB with other federal education and workforce laws, promoting excellent education and smooth transitions for all students.

P-16 alignment is critical to ensure that students are prepared for and successful at each step within the education system and prepared for work, postsecondary education and life. Vigorous coordination among federal, state and local education entities is important in fostering P-16 alignment of education laws.
Misc. 3 - Summary of Recommendation Grant secretary of education enhanced NCLB waiver authority for unforeseen circumstances, such as emergencies, natural disasters or economic downturns.
Misc. 3 - Full Recommendation Grant the U.S. Secretary of Education enhanced NCLB waiver authority for unforeseen issues and circumstances that arise. 

Governors support the important NCLB provisions on exceptional or uncontrollable circumstances, such as natural disasters, emergencies or a precipitous decline in the state's economy. Moreover, governors believe that the U.S. Secretary of Education should be provided greater and broader waiver authority in times of natural disasters or emergencies for states. This waiver authority should include but not be limited to extending or waiving reporting requirements; waiving or modifying fiscal requirements related to maintenance-of-effort; modifying the required and allowable uses of federal funds; waiving any matching requirements for federal funds; expanding federal transferability of funds and carry-over authority for states; extending the length of time for states and schools to obligate federal funds; and adding flexibility for teacher qualifications and adequate yearly progress.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National School Boards Association (NSBA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
Miscellaneous/Overarching (Misc.)
Misc. 1 - Summary of Recommendation Provide waivers for NCLB provisions, especially if burdensome or duplicative of state requirements.
Misc. 1 - Full Recommendation Allow the Secretary to provide NCLB statutory and regulatory waivers – including waiving requirements that are unnecessarily burdensome or duplicative of state requirements.
Misc. 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require Education Department to publish state plan amendments and waivers on its Web site in timely manner and clear language. 
Misc. 2 - Full Recommendation Require amendments to a state plan approved or waivers granted by the Secretary to be published on the Education Department's Web site in clear and complete language within 30 days.
Misc. 3 - Summary of Recommendation Ensure waivers or revisions to NCLB plans granted to one state are available to other states.
Misc. 3 - Full Recommendation Ensure that a waiver or state plan’s revision approved by the Secretary is available to any other state on a case-by-case determination.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)


Abbreviation Key for Organizations
AASA = American Association of School Administrators
AFT = American Federation of Teachers
BCSA = Business Coalition for Student Achievement
Comm. NCLB = Commission on No Child Left Behind
CCSSO = Council of Chief State School Officers
ECS = Education Commission of the States
Ed Trust = Education Trust
FEA = Forum on Educational Accountability
NAESP = National Association of Elementary School Principals
NASBE = National Association of State Boards of Education
NASSP = National Association of Secondary School Principals
NCSL = National Conference of State Legislatures
NEA = National Education Association
NGA = National Governors Association
NSBA = National School Boards Association


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