Boca teachers slam 'No Child Left Behind' - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Boca teachers slam 'No Child Left Behind'

BOCA RATON, FL (WFLX) - Ann Furey has taught Boca fourth graders how to write for 26 years.

Thursday night, she came to Boca Congressman Ted Deutch's education town hall, to read letters her students wrote to Rep. Deutch and the Assistant Deputy Secretary of Education Michael Yudin.

"They are becoming so upset often that they don't even want to come to school because they're sick to their stomach," she said.

"Do you think you could pass an FCAT in Russia if I sent you there next week? Well, one of my classmates was expected to do that," said one of her students.

Holding their letters, she waited during the 90-minute town hall, as other teachers carried the stop-the-testing mantra. "You are going to educate kids that become sheep. There is no critical thinking," one said.

"My son has a 3.5 GPA and has been held back twice for no reason -- other than the FCAT," said another.

Rep. Deutch, a Democrat, seemed to agree with them, and hopes to push the president to lessen emphasis on tests when 'No Child Left Behind' is re-written.

Assistant Deputy Secretary Yudin insisted bubble tests would become less-important, but that tests were still needed.

"You need to be able to measure whether a kid is ready to succeed in college or career without remediation," said Yudin.

Ms. Furey handed hand her students' letters to Rep. Deutch.

Despite having the ear of sympathetic public officials tonight, she says experience has shown that by the time bills are written, the children become less of a priority.

"There's a loss in translation. They're worried more about the money. I don't think we're looking at the children as individuals," said Furey.

Now, politicians will be put to the test.

The president is hoping for a new version of 'No Child Left Behind' to be reauthorized in time for next school year.

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