The second point I shared at the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE): We want IDEA to be fully funded and stop letting NCLB provisions “trump” protections for disabled children.
A teacher colleague shared this heart-wrenching story a while back:
Last year, I had a student from a home for medically fragile children. She was a quadriplegic…she was 12 last year. Cognitively, she was normal, but she was at a 1st grade level, not 6th grade. In six months, I took her up 2.5 grade levels, to 3.5 in reading and 4.0 in math. I also made school fun for her, so she wanted to come to school—for the first time in her life! But she had to take the standard test in our state for 6th graders. She failed miserably. By the standards that you are setting, I am not a capable teacher….Footnote: She has moved back with her family. Once she learned she did not pass the test, she is not going to school anymore.
Horrific scenarios such as these have been repeated all over the country since the passage of NCLB. It is past time to stop humiliating and frustrating our most vulnerable students and their teachers.