Ominous News about the Every Student Succeeds Act

When I posted about the Every Student Succeed Act, I was somewhat skeptical, but I followed what the Wall Street Journal reported, calling it “a baby step in the right direction.” I assumed Lamar Alexander was being somewhat accurate.

“We have an opportunity today to vote to reverse the trend toward a national school board,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R., Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Health and Education Committee and chief architect of the bill, along with Sen. Patty Murray (D., Wash.). ”We have an opportunity to make clear that in the future the path to higher standards, better teaching and real accountability will be through states, communities and classrooms, and not through Washington, D.C.”

I did have some doubts. Why did Barack Obama agree to sign ESSA into law?

I trust EAG News a lot more than the Wall Street Journal, and they recently posted something much more disturbing about ESSA:

Politico Pro just released an interview with outgoing U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan that is pretty damning of Congressional Republican leadership.

They asked about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

I’m stunned at how much better it ended up than either [House or Senate] bill going into conference. I had a Democratic congressman say to me that it’s a miracle — he’s literally never seen anything like it…

…if you look at the substance of what is there . . . embedded in the law are the values that we’ve promoted and proposed forever. The core of our agenda from Day One, that’s all in there – early childhood, high standards [i.e.,Common Core], not turning a blind eye when things are bad. For the first time in our nation’s history, that’s the letter of the law.

So Lamar Alexander promoted a bill that Obama’s Secretary of Education is enthusiastic about. That doesn’t sound promising.