PNS Daily Newscast - November 14, 2019 

New evidence arises from the first impeachment hearing; one in four federal student loan borrowers defaults early on; and growing proof that vaping isn't the healthy alternative it was thought to be.

2020Talks - November 14, 2019 

It's World Diabetes Day, and health care, including the high cost of insulin and other drugs, is a top issue for many voters. Plus, do early states like Iowa and New Hampshire have an outsized role in the nomination process?

Daily Newscasts

No Child Left Behind Act Deemed "Not Proficient"

January 8, 2007

It's the fifth anniversary of the No Child Left Behind Act today, and the law is up for renewal this year.
The federal law is meant to hold schools accountable for their performances with proficiency requirements for students. But more than 100 organizations dealing with education, children's issues and civil rights are calling on Congress to make several changes to the law, including less reliance on testing and helping schools with troubled students instead of punishing them.

Glen Koocher with the Massachusetts Association of School Committees says states with historically lower student achievement actually rank higher than Massachusetts under the law because it allows states to set their own standards.

"If you want to set them very low so you'll all make the achievement levels, that's okay with us, and that's what Congress did. Massachusetts, on the other hand, chose to set the standards higher than any other state in the country."

Monty Neill with the National Center for Fair and Open Testing worries that curriculum has become more focused on test scores at the expense of other important subjects.

"Because we only rely on standardized tests and there's so much teaching to the test, we're getting inflated test scores, and that means that you can't believe the results."

While Massachusetts did significantly improve the high school achievement gap on its latest test scores, Koocher says the tests show little of what students are learning.

Kevin Clay/Eric Mack, Public News Service - MA