ELIDA — Elida Local Board of Education has called for a complete overhaul of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, or ESEA.
Otherwise known as the No Child Left Behind Act, it was originally scheduled for reauthorization in 2007. However, the U.S. Congress still has yet to reach an agreement that would streamline existing federal requirements and enable state or local education agencies to generate policies that would best support local students.
In a resolution passed Tuesday night, the board asks for a complete overhaul of the act that would completely eliminate federally mandated testing for grades three through nine and take away at least one assessment for the remaining grades, such as Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC, testing.
“This is exactly what we want,” said Pat Schymanski, the board’s legislative liaison.
The resolution also calls for the elimination of teacher evaluations based on test scores and allowing state or local entities to produce their own evaluation systems for teachers and overall school districts to determine which are underperforming and how to assist them.
Based on these standards, a community-based needs assessment would be employed to better allocate funding to schools, enabling them to facilitate needs to encourage student achievement without placing the burden on districts with unfunded mandates. It would also restrict the secretary of education from determining any additional requirements or incentives.
Based on the resolution, the board would like, overall, for Congress to pass a more up-to-date version of ESEA that’s supported by federal investments and Title I.
“If we don’t do something then we’ve lost our window to try and influence legislation,” Schymanski said.
Four of the five board members approved the resolution, Jeff Christoff abstained saying he did not have enough information to make an informed decision.