MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Minnesota is seeking a waiver from key aspects of the federal No Child Left Behind law, which could free hundreds of schools from federal sanctions and prevent dozens of new districts from being labeled as failures.
State Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius sent the request on Tuesday to the U.S. Department of Education, which announced Aug. 8 that waivers would be available under certain conditions.
Cassellius wants to hold the law’s testing benchmarks steady for three years instead of letting them increase as required. She says that will prevent more schools from being wrongly called failures.
She also wants a waiver from the law’s provisions that force struggling schools to spend money on certain reforms. Cassellius says 600 Minnesota schools now face the sanctions, and the money could be better spent.
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