South Colby principal meets with leaders about NCLB

South Colby Elementary School principal Brian Pickard again traveled to Washington, D.C., to speak with state leaders about “No Child Left Behind.”

The Obama administration announced July 6 that Washington and Wisconsin were granted waivers from the education law.

But Pickard, who serves as a federal relations liaison for the Association of Washington Principals, said the intention of his meeting was not to eliminate NCLB. He said the law has several good features, such as “raising standards for student achievement.”

Pickard, who was representing 1,200 elementary school principals in Washington state, said he wants to do away with the “punitive” measures of the law. Some educators have chafed at terms, such as “failing” or “in need of improvement.”

Pickard met with Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell on July 19. With elections approaching, Pickard said he is not confident many, if any, aspects of NCLB will change this year.

“Both sides of the aisle agree that it is flawed, but they cannot agree on anything [else],” he said.

Pickard said he also met with state leaders about reallocating resources toward principal training. Nationally, he said school districts only spend an average of 3 percent of their Title I funds, which come from the federal government, on that.

In addition, Pickard said he encouraged local and state leaders to take a more active role in establishing educational standards. He said the federal government, which provides an average of 9 percent in funds toward kindergarten through 12th grade education, plays a major role in that.


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