|For Immediate Release|
|Thursday, March 25, 2004|
|Contact:||Contact: Heidi B. Perlman 781-338-3106 or Kimberly Beck 781-338-3105|
Commissioner Driscoll Encouraged by USDOE’s “Common Sense” Changes to NCLB
Malden - Education Commissioner David P. Driscoll returned from a three-day conference in Washington D.C. today encouraged by the new flexibility the U.S. Department of Education is showing regarding the implementation of No Child Left Behind.
Over the past two months federal officials have loosened the requirements for how results for students with special needs and Limited English proficiency are reported, and have waived the testing requirements for recent immigrants in their first year in the United States.
Federal officials speaking at the Annual Legislative Conference for the Council of Chief State School Officers also noted that an announcement will be coming soon on changes to the participation rate requirements, Driscoll said.
“This shift is a dramatic change from the earlier confining bureaucratic compliance requirements,” he said. “What we are seeing now is a much more flexible, common-sense approach, without backing off on the commitment to higher standards for all children.”
Driscoll credited Raymond Simon, the recently appointed assistant secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education, for much of the U.S. Department of Education’s new attitude.
“He has completely changed the tone of the U.S. DOE,” he said. “And he’s only been on the job for three months. It’s been an incredible transformation.”