Last week, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to pass a bill in support of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which, if passed by the Senate this week, will replace significant elements of No Child Left Behind. Although, the bill is not perfect, admits Associate Professor Martin West — who helped formulate versions of the bill while working with Senator Lamar Alexander on the Senate Education Committee — it is a step in the right direction.
"This is certainly a swinging of a pendulum, but it is a pendulum that's been swinging for a very long period in one direction — which is towards more federal involvement in K–12 education, and in particular more federal oversight of state accountability," West says. "This is really the federal government taking a step back."
In this edition of the Harvard EdCast, West discusses the big changes in federal legislation replacing No Child Left Behind, and what it may mean.
The Harvard EdCast is a weekly series of podcasts, available on the Harvard University iTunes U page, that features a 15-20 minute conversation with thought leaders in the field of education from across the country and around the world. Hosted by Matt Weber, the Harvard EdCast is a space for educational discourse and openness, focusing on the myriad issues and current events related to the field.