While Universities and legislatures are debating the balance between policy and practice, oversight and administration, the Federal Government is again venturing into micro management on steroids.
A group of California school districts have submitted an application, at the encouragement of the US Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan, which would provide waivers from provisions of No Child Left Behind.
Requests for waivers have historically been submitted by states - not school districts. School districts, called divisions in Virginia, are creations of states since education is a state function.
There is no provision for education in the US Constitution. The Fed is only involved through public laws passed by Congress, executive orders issued by the President, and opinions rendered by the US Supreme Court.
The Fed, which funds only about 5% of the cost of K-12 education, usually uses a carrot-and-stick approach: we will give you money if you do what we say!
In the case of California, the executive branch would ignore all of their historical boundaries and create an accountability system directly with localities. The state, despite the 10th Amendment, gets ignored.
Many critics have appealed to Secretary Duncan to resist the temptation. Apparently DC, which has numerous problems, now has an air quality control issue…there are mind-altering agents in the air!!!
No matter which side of the aisle you occupy, you had better be concerned about agencies making laws…or constitutions. Sec. Duncan has said, "If Congress does not act, we will"…maybe he better take another look at his job description!