SCR 7 – AS INTRODUCED
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 7
This senate concurrent resolution urges the United States Congress to amend the No Child Left Behind Act.
STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Six
A RESOLUTION urging Congress to amend the No Child Left Behind Act.
Whereas, in 2002 the No Child Left Behind Act was enacted on a bipartisan basis, which has as its purpose bringing academic achievement in language arts, mathematics, and science to students who are not presently achieving at acceptable levels; and
Whereas, in 2004 the National Conference of State Legislatures created a bipartisan task force to study the No Child Left Behind Act and the task force suggested specific changes to make the No Child Left Behind Act more workable, more responsive to variations among the states, and more effective in improving education; and
Whereas, a stated goal of the No Child Left Behind Act is to provide flexibility for states to improve academic achievement and to close the achievement gap, the task force found that little flexibility has been granted to states to implement the No Child Left Behind Act; and
Whereas, even though New Hampshire has demonstrated significant success in raising student achievement through standards and accountability, there is no provision in the No Child Left Behind Act to allow states such as New Hampshire to use their state accountability system to comply with the spirit of the No Child Left Behind Act; and
Whereas, the No Child Left Behind Act requires annual yearly progress to be based “primarily on academic assessments” and adequate yearly progress (AYP) is in fact measured by a single standardized test, which the task force found to be an inadequate measure, instead of calling for multiple measures of AYP; and
Whereas, the No Child Left Behind Act sets AYP expectations, requiring all students to be 100 percent proficient by 2013-2014 and the task force found the AYP provisions overly prescriptive and rigid, improperly identifying schools “in need of improvement,” making it impossible for New Hampshire schools to fulfill the law’s promise; and
Whereas, the No Child Left Behind Act will, according to the New Hampshire department of education, cause a large percentage of New Hampshire’s elementary schools to fail to meet AYP requirements by 2014, states should be given flexibility to determine which schools failed to make AYP and which schools are in need of improvement; and
Whereas, the No Child Left Behind Act mandates a costly sequence of intervention services, which the task force found to be inflexible and instead recommended states be allowed to decide on the interventions when a school is “in need of improvement;” and
Whereas, the No Child Left Behind Act coerces participation by placing punitive financial consequences on states refusing to participate; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate, the House of Representatives concurring:
That the New Hampshire general court urges the Congress of the United States to amend the No Child Left Behind Act in accordance with the recommendations of the National Conference of State Legislatures’ task force on the No Child Left Behind Act, and in a manner that allows states, such as New Hampshire, to continue to work toward the goal of closing the achievement gap without the coercion of losing federal funds; and
That the New Hampshire general court urges the Congress of the United States to request a Government Accountability Office evaluation, in accordance with the recommendations of the National Conference of State Legislatures’ task force, of the costs to states and local school districts of complying with the No Child Left Behind Act requirements and of achieving the 100 percent proficiency goals of the No Child Left Behind Act; and
That the senate clerk send copies of this resolution to the President and Secretary of the United States Senate, the Speaker and the Clerk of the United States House of Representatives, and each member of the New Hampshire congressional delegation.