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No Child architect expects revisions
By JEFFREY S. SOLOCHEK, Times Staff Writer
Published August 28, 2007
US Rep. George Miller, D-California, listens to teachers speak about their views on the No Child Left Behind law. Miller, one of the key architects of the law was in town to get opinions on the law.
[Carrie Pratt | Times]
TAMPA - U.S. Rep. George Miller, one of the chief architects of the No Child Left Behind Act, visited Tampa on Monday to hear what local educators think as the federal law is up for reauthorization.
He also outlined some things he'd like to change about it.
Miller, chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, told two groups that he is pushing to measure kids' growth over time, and to move away from the "one test, one day" model that the law has encouraged. States such as Florida that have sought to use the growth model have needed waivers to this point.
Miller added that the use of student portfolios and annual pretests to evaluate kids could become part of the mix, especially for English-language learners and children with special education needs.
"A lot of good things happened for poor and minority children because of No Child Left Behind, but not enough," Miller told a gathering of school board members and superintendents at Blake High School. "It has become apparent that we didn't get it right. ... We've learned a lot in these five years, and we're prepared to act on it."
Other changes touch on things such as performance pay for teachers, uniform high school graduation rate requirements, and tutoring options and extended-day programs for students in low-performing schools.
Miller said he expected the draft bill proposal to become available on the committee's Web site (edworkforce.house.gov) overnight or soon after. He said he hopes to have the No Child reauthorization off the House floor by the end of September.
Miller came to Tampa as a nod to freshman U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor. He said that many of the changes to the No Child legislation are the result of demands of newcomers, including Castor, who has made her complaints about the system heard in Washington.
"They made it very clear, there were no votes to extend this act if these fundamental and basic changes weren't made," said Miller, who has represented his California district since 1975.
He also spent nearly 90 minutes with teachers at the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association headquarters.
Jeffrey S. Solochek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 909-4614. For more education news, visit the Gradebook at blogs.tampabay.com/schools.