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[Susan notes: THIS is a beautiful letter.]

Submitted to but not published
06/12/2008

Dear Senator Barack Obama,

Surely you must know I want you to be the next President of these United States. I do not give away my books on SARAH WINNEMUCCA to just anyone, yet, I did give one to your wife when she was here and spoke in Reno some time ago.



I have high hopes in your vision and your sense of change for this country, as did Sarah in the late 1800̢۪s. However, you have one change yet to understand.



NCLB. It doesn't need any funding; it doesn̢۪t need to exist at all. It is killing children. It is killing real teachers. It is destroying public education as we used to know it: free, public and creative.



I repeat: NCLB. It doesn't need to exist at all. Please, do not resurrect it; do not fund it. First, read. Read Susan Ohanian's book, WHEN CHILDHOOD COLLIDES WITH NCLB.



Read how NCLB name-calls schools that do poorly—it labels them negatively. INADEQUETE. FAILING. NEEDS IMPROVEMENT. No real teacher would say that to a child, or do a class of students. Yet NCLB does this to whole schools, to entire school districts! And the final thrust is: money is REMOVED from schools that do not score within the AYP expected. How does this help anyone????



Read. Feel. Learn. Then realize that you would not allow your children to be treated as NCLB would treat them. NCLB rules by fear. NCLB rules by competition. NCLB rules by intimidation. Just know: NCLB KILLS. It's that simple to understand.



What is NCLB all about for real? Numbers. Scores. Money.



It is NOT, NOT, NOT about children being educated.



Please Read. Learn. Lead.



Sincerely,



Georgia Hedrick


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