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[Susan notes: This is a powerful letter, made more powerful by this analogy: taking money away from failing schools is similar to taking a book away from a child who can't read.]

Published in Newsday

To the editor

I agree with Nancy Close, president of the East Islip

teachers union, that the No Child Left Behind Act is

too focused on high-stakes exams and not on the true

progress of individual children ["An educator's lesson

for Congress, Opinion, Sept. 25].

Although touted as this administration's greatest

achievement, the act is misguided and cruel. In

observing the quagmire this administration has created

for education, a couple of things are evident. First,

taking money away from failing schools is similar to

taking a book away from a child who can't read.

Second, the act pays too much attention to proficiency

and not enough on the value of individual progress.

Last, federal mandates need federal funding.

Let's get it right the second time, President Bush.

Consider the folks on the front lines.

Editor's note: The writer is a public school teacher.

Joseph Coladonato

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