UTAH BACKS OFF NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND
By Lynn Stuter
March 11, 2005
I could say, “I told you so” but I won’t. Well, then again, maybe I will. Many put great hope in Utah’s Legislative maneuver to “repudiate” the No Child Left Behind Act.
At the time, my response was, “It won’t happen.” Why? Because Utah, in accepting discretionary grant money from the federal government, entered into a de facto contract with the feds that is legally binding and very enforceable. In short, Utah took the money, now Utah can’t back out of its obligations to the feds.
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (or maybe we should call it the Every Child A Worker Act) is nothing more than the next step of the Improving America’s School’s Act of 1994 (IASA); both are to “extend for five years the authorizations and appropriations for the programs under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, and for other purposes.” The system providing the support for the provisions of these acts was established by Goals 2000. While the Goals 2000 law has sunset, the system it put in place goes merrily on, doing exactly what it is supposed to — transform the education system to a workforce development system under the auspices of the federal Workforce Invest Act of 1998. An Oregon teacher recently lamented, concerning the supposed lack of state education funding and overcrowded classrooms, “How can we produce the workers for the corporations?” (KATU TV) I would quip “out of the mouths of babes” but that would no doubt draw flack from the politically correct crowd who are long on sensitivity but short on understanding.
Sad, indeed, that classroom facilitators (what we used to call teachers) don’t seem to realize that producing workers for corporations isn’t what education should be about. Likewise, it is sad that these same individuals seem to have no understanding of the Constitution or Bill of Rights or the history of the founding of America. How can they possibly teach children where our nation came from when they have no clue themselves? Oh, I’m sorry, I forgot, perception is reality, so whatever the children choose to believe concerning the founding of America and the history of America is just alright. After all, it is their reality and far be it that we should warp their self-esteem by telling them their perception isn’t even close to reality.
A few years back, the Governor of Alabama set about to reject Goals 2000. While much ado was made about it at the outset, in the end the Governor “saw the light” and the idea died a quiet death. The funeral wasn’t even attended by its most ardent supporters.
Such will also happen with Utah’s Legislative maneuver to “repudiate” the No Child Left Behind Act. The writing is already on the wall. In an article by George Archibald of The Washington Times, he stated,
“But at a White House request, Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr., a Republican, delayed the final state Senate action, and instead called a special April 20 legislative session to reconsider the bill to repudiate No Child Left Behind.”
The special session is set to “reconsider the bill to repudiate No Child Left Behind.” Translated that means “the federal hammer has dropped and we can’t afford to do without the billions of dollars we receive in federal discretionary grant funds.” Note also that the special session is set for April 20, 2005, sufficiently far in the future that everyone’s attention will have been diverted to something else so the funeral can proceed quietly.
“Repudiating” No Child Left Behind is tantamount to pulling out morning glory. So long as the root remains, the plant will grow right back. In order to “repudiate” federal control, states will have to reassert States Rights as outlined in the 10th Amendment to the United States Constitution. Next, the money that has been pilfered by the IRS from the salaries of the people, and used to fund programs in the states bearing federal regulatory oversight, must be cut off.
Goals 2000; Public Law 103-227; 103rd Congress.
Improving America’s Schools Act of 1994; Public Law 103-382; 103rd Congress.
KATU TV, Portland, Oregon; February 21, 2005; report of rally at the Oregon State Capitol on President’s Day by parents, teachers and students.
No Child Left Behind Act of 2002; Public Law 107-110; 107th Congress.
Workforce Investment Act of 1998; Public Law 105-220; 105th Congress.
© 2005 Lynn M. Stuter - All Rights Reserved
Mother and wife, Stuter has spent the past ten years researching systems theory with a particular emphasis on education. She home schooled two daughters, now grown and on their own. She has worked with legislators, both state and federal, on issues pertaining to systems governance and education reform. She networks nationwide with other researchers and citizens concerned with the transformation of our nation. She has traveled the United States and lived overseas. Web site: www.learn-usa.com E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sad, indeed, that classroom facilitators (what we used to call teachers) don’t seem to realize that producing workers for corporations isn’t what education should be about.