(Updates with secretary’s comment in the fourth paragraph.)
Nov. 16 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said he is working with Representative John Boehner, leader of the House Republicans, on changes to the “No Child Left Behind” law for public schools that was passed during former President George W. Bush’s administration.
Duncan has talked with Boehner on education issues including altering the law, which affects kindergarten through 12th-grade schools, the education secretary said today in Washington at the Wall Street Journal CEO Council. Boehner, from Ohio, is expected to become speaker of the House after Republicans take control in January.
The 2002 law, which requires states to measure student achievement with standardized tests, contains perverse incentives and fails to reward states and school systems for successes, Duncan said. The secretary said he is working to change the law with House Republicans including Representative John Kline of Minnesota, who may become chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor in January.
“We want to reward excellence and growth,” Duncan said in a question-and-answer session at the conference. “We want to know how much students and states are improving each year.”
No Child Left Behind mandates that all children be proficient in reading and math by 2014 on state standardized tests and show yearly progress toward that goal or risk losing federal money. The Obama administration is proposing to give schools more flexibility in showing progress.
--With assistance from John Hechinger in Boston. Editors: Andrew Pollack, Donna Alvarado
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