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PNS Daily Newscast - January 21, 2020 

As the Biden presidency begins, voter suppression remains a pressing issue; faith leaders see an opportunity to reduce extremism.

2020Talks - January 21, 2021 

Inauguration yields swift action: Joe Biden becomes 46th president and Kamala Harris vice president -- the first woman, African-American, and person of South Indian descent in this role. Harris seats new senators; Biden signs slew of executive actions and gets first Cabinet confirmation through the Senate.

Five Candles for "No Child Left Behind" - No Party in MT

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January 8, 2007

The No Child Left Behind law (NCLB) is five years old today and the celebration is muted. More than 100 children's groups, education organizations and civil rights groups, including groups in Montana, are calling for changes to the law before it's renewed. Reggie Weaver with the National Education Association says the focus on testing and punishing schools when students don't pass a standardized test isn't in the best interest of kids.

"We need to make sure that something is done so we can measure student growth over a period of time, as opposed to a snapshot of one test on a day."

Stan Karp with Rethinking Schools adds that always focusing on the "next test" has drastically changed the curriculum.

"Things that aren't tested, like social studies, art and music, are getting a lot less time, and sometimes these are the things that are the most valuable and most challenging to students."

Suggested changes include fewer tests, restoring classes that have been cut to make time to study for tests, and more funding so schools can target help to students falling behind. The No Child Left Behind law was designed with the goal that every student would pass every standardized test.

Information on the campaign to make changes to NCLB and the groups supporting the effort is at

Deborah Smith/Eric Mack, Public News Service - MT