Washington, D.C. — Carmel Martin, Executive Vice President for Policy at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement today after Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced his principles for a reauthorized Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Before joining CAP, Martin was the assistant secretary for planning, evaluation, and policy development at the U.S. Department of Education.
A high-performing public school system is essential for our future economic competitiveness and the foundation of our nation as a place of opportunity for all. Today, Secretary Duncan laid out a vision for a federal education policy that will move all students, particularly those with the greatest needs, toward college and career readiness by providing the investments in interventions that are proven to work: early childhood education, more money for low-income schools, access to effective teachers, and rigorous academic coursework. While current annual assessments provide critically needed information on student and subgroup academic progress, Secretary Duncan also rightfully called for addressing legitimate concerns about an overemphasis on testing in schools. An overhaul of No Child Left Behind is overdue, but any rewrite must retain a core focus on equity and school improvement in order to address the pressing needs we face.
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