Friday, November 12, 2004

High Achievers Leaving Failing Schools Behind

The Washington Post has this surprising story of how parents of "gifted and talented" students are using certain provisions of The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) in order to get their kids into better schools.

What the law says is that if a child is attending a school that has been designated as not meeting their "Adequate Yearly Performance," (AYP) then that child may transfer to any school that has space available.

Many say that the law was intended to help poor children that are attending low-performing inner-city schools. However, according to The Post, gifted and talented students from mostly upper middle-class (or even the well-to-do) are the ones most likely to take advantage of this aspect of the law.

The Post's take on it is that it is somehow "wrong" for those of more fortunate circumstances to take advantage of the statute. The "buzz" in the traditionally liberal Education Bureaucracy is supportive of the Post's assertions that the law was only intended to help the children of socio-economically disadvantaged homes.

Here at the 'Wonks, we disagree. We do not "have a problem" with what is going on. Rich or poor, the law should apply equally to all. We should not fault those that are resourceful for doing what they can to get the best education for their children. As long as everyone has access to the same process.

Special Mortarboard Tip:
Wild Bill's Passionate America