Friday, June 6, 2008

The candidates on education

Over at "The Apple," there is a guide to the presidential candidates' stances on education. I looked through Barack Obama's profile and was a little surprised at what I saw in regards to No Child Left Behind:

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., was not in office when Congress passed an education bill in 2001 that requires states to annually test students, known as the No Child Left Behind law. He has said it is a well-intentioned attempt to erase long-standing achievement gaps between white and minority students, but he believes the Bush administration ruined it through inflexible application. Obama wants more money for schools and to move away from traditional testing to judge schools.

From the debates and the media coverage of his campaign I had somehow gathered that he was against NCLB. I think it's a great idea to make sure schools do their jobs and don't leave kids in the dust. We shouldn't abandon it.

For both John McCain and Obama I'm left with questions on the education issue. Are they for or against quotas? Do they oppose or support vouchers that would allow low income students to go to private schools? If they oppose vouchers, why do they feel students must be limited to one choice of school, even when the school is substandard? Do they support greater accountability to make sure that teachers that abuse children face penalties? Will they act to make sure schools better prepare students to compete in the global market?
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