I have spent almost this entire blog series giving you information as to why the No Child Left Behind policy should be changed and as this series is coming to a close, I will now discuss possible solutions to this problem. It should be apparent that the system needs to be changed with evidence I have presented or from experiences you have had in your own life but the big question is how it should be changed. There are many perspectives on how the education system should work exactly and there is truly no right solution because no matter what education system is implemented, there will be some children getting a better education than others. As hopeless as that sounds it is something that our federal government has been realizing recently or at least they should be coming to this realization. I am going to propose a solution that I think would work best but that doesn’t mean mine will work best or that I have all the right answers.
If I were to change the No Child Left Behind system I would start with a completely new program in which the current policy would be thrown out the window and the eduction reform would start from scratch. Trying to fix and tweak an already broken policy is incredibly difficult and poses many challenges so I think that starting completely new would be the best. I would keep standardized testing as a way to measure a student’s progress because I feel that even though standardized testing has it faults and can be annoying at times, it is the best way to truly assess the children on a national level. With that being said, the standardized test needs to be implemented on a national level instead of the tests being made up by the state. If the federal government were to make the tests and distribute them, the system would be more fair and easier to compare state to state because all the students across the nation would essentially be taking the same test. I also would shift the focus of the standardized testing scores away from passing a certain benchmark to having individual children progress sin their test scores from year to year. The school will be then be judged on whether or not their students are improving and what percentage are instead of how many are passing. A state’s education system will then be judged on how many schools have students improving. I haven’t able to come up with any realistic consequences for not having enough students improving but then again there is no consequence now with the current NAEP.
Like I said before this is just a proposed solution and I know it’s not perfect and there will still be many problems and flaws with this system but at least it addresses the main issues that I currently see with the No Child Left Behind policy. It fixes the issue of comparability by making one national test and it reduces “teaching to the test” and pressure on students and educators by requiring improvement and not passing. Let me know what your thoughts are on this!