Education officials say Wisconsin’s No Child Left Behind waiver will be approved by the federal government in “a matter of days.”
Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction state Superintendent Tony Evers released a statement saying the state’s waiver has been submitted for executive approval at the U.S. Department of Education.
Evers says a state-based test will set higher standards for Wisconsin schools.
Opting out of the federal program allows the state to move beyond the current system's pass or fail school ratings. The state wants to change the way it measures a school’s performance, by assigning schools a score from zero to 100. The DPI would take student achievement and growth and postsecondary readiness into account. Teacher and principal evaluations will also be included.
The DPI declined to comment on the waiver’s status until the Department of Education gives its final approval.
Wisconsin Education Association Council spokeswoman Christina Brey says a new evaluation system will help the state focus its attention where it’s needed: “Students are so much more than one test score. All schools in all parts of Wisconsin have different challenges and different opportunities.”
Brey says she hopes the state-based evaluation will help families better understand what’s going on in schools.
The Department of Education has approved No Child Left Behind waivers for 24 states so far. 13 states are still waiting for approval.