Sunday, February 29, 2004

Utah's rebellion stalls

I'm disappointed but not surprised. Under pressure from the White House and the DOE, it seems as though Utah's rebellion against NCLB is being put on the back burner.
    Utah has shelved its rebellion against the federal No Child Left Behind education program, at least for now, with the Utah Senate voting to study the problem instead of passing a law prohibiting the use of state or local tax money to pay for federal mandates.

    The Senate on Thursday sent the bill to a committee that meets only in summer, handing a victory to the Bush administration. Administration officials have visited the Utah Capitol three times in recent weeks, hoping to defuse hostility over President Bush's education program.

    The Senate's action came without debate on a voice vote.

    House Education Chairwoman Rep. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, said the study committee wasn't a "graveyard." Dayton presides over the Education Interim Committee and vowed to revive the issue for next January's legislative session.

    "It's not dying," Dayton said. "It's putting off and deferring."
This essentially keeps the issue off until next January, after the general election. Soooo, I think this is part of the re-election strategy, part of which is to try to sweep this thing under a rug until afterwards. I wonder what other 'surprises' we'll encounter regarding NCLB. Maybe they'll try to get the states to postpone releasing the testing results until January also. Oh, and I forgot: let's dumb down teacher standards, too. Maybe the terrorists will leave the DOE alone.