Wes Hickman (202-224-5972) or Kevin Bishop (864-250-1417)
WASHINGTON- Recently, U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) sat down with teachers, principals, and other education leaders in South Carolina to hear their ideas on how to improve No Child Left Behind (NCLB). The roundtable discussion took place at the University of South Carolina’s College of Education.
Participants in the meeting included teachers, principals, and representatives of local school districts, the South Carolina Association of Public Charter Schools, the South Carolina Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, the South Carolina Parent Teacher Association, the Palmetto State Teachers Association, the South Carolina Association for Career and Technical Education, the South Carolina School Boards Association, the South Carolina Association of School Administrators, the South Carolina Council for Exceptional Children, and 2008 South Carolina Teacher of the Year Ann Marie Taylor.
“NCLB was a historic effort to bring about accountability to our schools and measure achievement and progress of our students,” said Graham. “As with any major changes in federal policy, it appears some parts have worked while others have not. I think it is important to meet with men and women who spend their lives educating children to hear their views on NCLB.”
Graham noted the discussion focused on four topics:
Improvements that can be made to Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) requirements in order to reflect the actual proficiency of schools.
Highly qualified teachers requirements
Accommodating special needs students
Recognition for states like South Carolina that have some of the highest proficiency standards in the country
“As the Congress continues our discussions about the reauthorization of NCLB, it is important to have frank discussions about the best path forward,” said Graham. “Accountability is one of the keys to continued progress in education, but we must ensure NCLB works for our students and meets our nation’s education goals. Education policy is best made at the state and local level, but if reformed NCLB can be helpful.”