Saturday, July 11, 2009

An Educational Experience Through An Education Research Project By Fabio Botarelli

For an imperative research project this week, I was required to research two pieces of education legislation that took place during our countries 110th Congress; one sponsored by Senator Chris Dodd and another sponsored by Senator Ted Kennedy.

Through my research, I was able to find out that Senator Dodd was the sponsor of bill S. 224 “A bill to create or adopt, and implement, rigorous and voluntary American education content standards in mathematics and science covering kindergarten through grade 12, to provide for the assessment of student proficiency benchmarked against such standards, and for other purposes.” In order to achieve this goal, the bill first aims to adapt voluntary mathematics and science standards as the core of their own academic content standards in such subjects. Secondly, the bill aims to align their teacher certification and professional development requirements to such standards.

The second bill that I researched thoroughly is the Success Act (S.164), otherwise known as the “States Using Collaboration and Coordination to Enhance Standards for Students Act.” According to a study released in the summer of 2006, the U.S loses $3.7 billion a year to the cost of remedial education and in individuals’ reduced earning potential because students are not learning the basic skills they need to succeed after high school. To implement this policy the Success Act will update the Nation’s Report Card to ensure that it sets a national benchmark for today’s competitive education. It also will establish a P-16 Prepardness Councils to link student knowledge and skills with the expectations of colleges, employers, and the armed forces. Lastly, the bill will encourage collaboration among states in raising the bar for student achievement by providing grants to state consortia that developed common standards and assessments that are highly rigorous.

In conclusion, with the Democrats in power, there is going to be more funding directed towards our nation’s education system in the new 111th congress. After going to five education hearings and writing five action memo’s this summer, the same message that is always brought up is that the United States is falling behind in education, especially in the math and sciences. If our government can somehow allocate its resources effectively to address this problem as opposed to pouring money into the same failed strategies, we can see a valuable use of our tax dollars.

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