Secretary of Education, Margaret Spellings, spoke at the National Charter School Conference in Albuquerque two weeks ago. Here's a clip from her remarks:
On that last point, I'm pleased to let you know that my Department is drafting revised guidance to give states further encouragement and flexibility to help more high quality charters flourish...
In addition to measures aimed specifically at charter schools, we are proposing a number of changes consistent with the spirit of charters.
On the flexibility front, we plan to allow the use of growth models to track individual student progress from year-to-year and monitor achievement gaps.
And to help deal with the pressing problem of restructuring schools, we have developed a menu of options for local school officials to choose from, including real governance changes and—as I mentioned—the option of reinventing these schools as charters, regardless of arbitrary caps.
For all the innovations in education in America in the past fifteen years, so much about our approach to education still looks more like 19th century agrarian America than the nation that gave birth to Microsoft and Google.
The demands of the 21st century are not going to wait—we need every student to achieve their potential today.
No Child Left Behind is largely comprised of charter school philosophical components. School choice, meaningful parental involvement, and high expectations for academic achievement are all embodied in No Child Left Behind. These philosophies are hard to argue against. Who is going to be the one to tell a minority, low-income parent her child doesn't have to prepare for college or give that parent an excuse about how her child just can't learn the same as other children? Yes, ALL children can, and should learn!