June 3, 2003, Extra Credit
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June 3, 2003
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In Minnesota, No Child Left Behind Prompts "Unprecedented Attention to Individual Students"
As part of No Child Left Behind, states across the country are using test results and other criteria to identify schools in need of improvement. As recently reported in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, these accountability measures are prompting principals and teachers in Minnesota to redouble their efforts to make sure they are meeting the needs of every child. Following is an excerpt from the Star-Tribune article:

"In the wake of the state's announcement last week that more than 400 Minnesota elementary schools may soon be tagged as needing improvement under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, schools are focusing on how to stay off that list—or how to get off it.

"For most, it means unprecedented attention to individual students and reaching those who struggle. Whether that includes summer school, after-school programs or outreach to parents depends on the school and the kids who go there, officials said. [emphasis added]

"The real list of low performers comes out July 31, based on schools' 2003 Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) scores. That list may shock some. For the first time, whole schools could be tagged as needing improvement judging by the achievement of smaller subgroups of students.

"That means a school with high average scores but, for example, lower scores among English-language-learners or children living in poverty could be tagged as underperforming. It's a sobering thought for many.

"'This means we need a wider lens; we have to do this for all kids,' said Sue Roehrich, curriculum director for the Winona schools. 'But it's also a very focused lens. Accountability will be much sharper in reading and math. We'll have to do well across the board.'"
This article was originally published on June 1, 2003, and is no longer available online.


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Last Modified: 01/07/2004