Utah Approved for No Child Left Behind Waiver

(KCPW News) The controversial No Child Left Behind law is no longer the law of the land in Utah. Friday the U.S. Department of Education announced it had granted the state’s request for a waiver. State Superintendent Larry Shumway says the decision will bring more freedom to Utah schools.

“I think it is a tremendously important move forward for us,” said Sumway. “We have been very unhappy, a lot of us, with the excessive federal involvement in our public school system. This moves us away from that. It puts us into situations where we are doing state accountability rather than federal.”

Utah will still use its own accountability system, on everything from teacher evaluations to student achievement, based on a system Shumway says the state has developed over several years.

“We’ve been moving down this track with teacher evaluation,” said Shumway.  “We’ve been moving down the track with our state accountability system.  So by demonstrating to the U.S. Department of Education the things we have already been committed to as a state we were able to show them that we could work within this flexibility requirement.”

Utah was one of five states granted the waiver on Friday. A total of twenty four states have received waivers.