President Obama and his administration are putting forth efforts to ensure that their educational policies remain in effect even after their White House term is up.
Recently, the Obama administration announced its plan to invite states to renew their waivers from the No Child Left Behind Act, allowing them to extend policy guidelines until the 2018-2019 school year.
Under these educational guidelines, states will be required to implement a few new policies that will hold teachers and the school system more accountable for student achievement. For example, states will not be able to give top accountability ratings to schools who don’t close significant achievement gaps or graduation rate gaps, and states will be required to implement proper teacher evaluations based off student performance. Additionally, the guidelines will require that states have programs in place that prepare high school students to be both college and career-ready upon graduation in order to ensure they are well-equipped to be leaders in the workforce.
On Thursday, Nov. 13, Education Secretary Arne Duncan delivered a speech to the Council of Chief State School Officers in California to further detail the new guidelines and the option for states to extend their NCLB waivers.
The NCLB act was originally signed into law by former President George W. Bush. In 2007, the act expired and Congress made several unsuccessful attempts to rewrite the law. Four years later, in 2011, the Obama administration used their executive power to waive some of the law’s most controversial components in an effort to enforce tougher teacher evaluations and accountability systems that focus on educational growth.
Today, 40 states, as well as Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, are operating under the NCLB waiver implemented by the Obama administration, with the option to now extend their contract beyond the president’s current term.