"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Raising Concerns About NCLB With National Candidates

From Jan Resseger:
It is election season… Please raise concerns about the No Child Left Behind Act when you talk with candidates for national office (and people who already serve in Congress). Here are two things you can do right now:
  1. Take a copy of “Questions about the No Child Left Behind Act for Candidates for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives,” (pdf) when you attend any candidates night. I actually did just that last Thursday night. At the event, having an opportunity to write out a question on a card, I copied off one of the questions provided. Lo and behold… my question got presented by the moderator to a candidate for U.S. Senate. Mine was the only question on NCLB, but mine was not the only intense interest in the candidate’s answer. The audience became quietly attentive … with much applause for this particular candidate’s comments. And the next night in his opening and closing remarks at a televised debate, this candidate mentioned that reform is needed in NCLB. Please make a difference by making sure this subject is raised often in this election season.
  2. Have you taken the time to participate in the “No Child Left Behind Letters to Congress Project” on-line at FaithfulAmerica.org? http://www.faithfulamerica.org/article.php?id=98 If not, check out this year-long project, which provides you with ten different opportunities to send a letter electronically to your Congressional representative and your two senators.

The project is tied to the simple National Council of Churches statement, “Ten Moral Concerns in the Implementation of No Child Left Behind.” http://www.ucc.org/justice/education/nclb-moral.pdf In our letters project, we have posted ten letters, each one lifting up one of the moral concerns. The important part is that you insert your own story into the letter at the point where your story is requested. Each letter gives you an opportunity to tell your elected officials how NCLB is affecting your child or a teacher you know, or your own school, or your community. Please take the time to participate in this project by telling your own truth as a person of faith to your elected officials.

Do share with your own contacts these opportunities to make a difference. Thanks! And peace to you.

Jan Resseger, Minister for Public Education and Witness
United Church of Christ Justice and Witness Ministries
700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100

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