Report Says Law Provokes
Schools to Help Needy Students
President Bush's education law is prodding schools to help more needy students, but states will not come close to reaching all the struggling children unless the government spends more and lightens demands, according to an independent analysis.
States are doing more to help students succeed in reading and math, aligning classes to state standards and using test data to identify children's weaknesses, according to a report by the Center on Education Policy. The new report is considered the most comprehensive review of the three-year-old No Child Left Behind law.
But researchers said any success will be hindered unless problems are fixed.
Beyond their concerns about money and staffing, many school leaders say the testing requirements for disabled children and students with limited English skills are unfair and unworkable.
The study does not answer the central question of whether the law helps more students learn.
The report is based largely on surveys of education officials in 49 states and 314 school districts, plus case studies in 36 districts.
Oklahoma chose not to take part, and the District of Columbia responded too late to be included.
U.S. Agencies to Monitor Efforts to Reduce Emissions
The government will start keeping track of all the "greenhouse" gases that farmers and foresters voluntarily reduce to help combat global warming.
Officials in the Energy and Agriculture departments issued guidelines yesterday for counting those efforts.
They said the action indicates how seriously the Bush administration views the problem of gases that trap heat in the atmosphere like a greenhouse.
Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said farm and forest landowners now have "a unique opportunity to be part of the solution to greenhouse-gas emissions" such as those involving carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxides, refrigerants and several other compounds.
For example, they can report using no-till agriculture, installing a waste digester, improving nutrient management or managing forest land in ways that cut emissions of those gases.