FairTest Launches Petition on NCLB

K-12 Testing

FairTest has recently launched a national petition calling for an overhaul of the No Child Left Behind Law. The petition can be signed on the web at www.fairtest.org, where a version for downloading and printing is also available. The text of the petition reads:


Support Quality Education by Overhauling the “No Child Left Behind” Law
Every child in our country needs and deserves a high-quality education. The federal “No Child Left Behind” law, while proclaiming this goal, is in fact doing the opposite. NCLB is leaving millions of young people behind, disrupting school districts, undermining the democratic oversight of our children’s education, and setting back the quality of public education.


We the undersigned parents, students, educators, and other concerned people call upon our elected officials to work for fundamental changes in NCLB to: 


• Reduce reliance on standardized, one-size-fits-all testing as the principal measure of student and school progress. Do not make decisions based only on test scores. Promote authentic assessments for students and schools including multiple ways for students to demonstrate their knowledge, primarily on the basis of their daily classroom work.
• Implement a high-quality accountability system that will help schools improve and fully address achievement gaps. Replace the rigid and unrealistic “adequate yearly progress” rules which will label most schools in the country as failures, even those that are high-achieving or steadily improving, and subject them to severe and unhelpful sanctions.
• Prevent privatization of public education through vouchers and similar plans.
• Fully fund our public schools at the level necessary to provide an excellent education for all our children.