Kline says House will still vote on ESEA rewrite
- Despite a setback late in February, U.S. Rep. John Kline (R-MN) still expects a vote on the House rewrite of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
- The House education committee chairman says conservative opposition to the rewrite of the law, also known by the name of its Bush-era reauthorization, No Child Left Behind, caught him off-guard, attributing it not just to groups like Heritage Action for America and Club for Growth, but also a blog post that it would reinforce Common Core and give the government authority in private schools.
- What the bill would actually do, if passed, is maintain the annual testing status quo, allow more authority on the state level regarding how federal funds are spent and failing schools are addressed, bar the U.S. education secretary from imposing standards or conditions in exchange for waivers, and allow public ed dollars to follow low-income students to other schools, among other things.
Kline now expects a vote on the bill to come around the week of March 16. Still, even if that does happen, it's still all but guaranteed to get a veto as it exists right now — and that's if it even makes it through the Senate. As we've noted before, and as U.S. News notes in its coverage, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), who heads that chamber's education committee, is seeking a bipartisan rewrite of the bill.
Ultimately, the House would be better served to make adjustments the Senate and White House would be more likely to accept rather than pushing the current version of the bill and further delaying an actual reauthorization.
- U.S. News & World Report GOP House education chair hopeful he can get bill passed to update No Child Left Behind
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