Ann Foster of Parents for Public Schools has a great post about the pending No Child Left Behind reauthorization. She is a former school board member and presents a good balanced view of some of the key issues that need to be addressed.
In particular I appreciate her focus on the problems of including most Special Education students in the regular testing regime. She writes:
But perhaps the biggest travesty of all involved the most challenged and vulnerable students in the school district – children with physical and mental disabilities – which in some cases included those who could not even sit up. Sure, there was a provision in the NCLB law that allowed districts to exclude a certain percentage of special education students. But it had no relation to the number of special education students in the district. As a result, some children had to take the test who should have never been required to. It was cruel and unusual punishment. And it should never have happened.
She also covers high-qualified teacher requirements, unfunded mandates, and other issues that Congress should deal with fairly this time around.