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[Susan notes: Lynn Stoddard is the champion visionary for an education that matters to children.]

Submitted to but not published

Education Committee Member:

The NCLB Law may be the biggest mistake our government has ever made. It has caused more damage and cheated more children of their full development than any law that has ever been enacted. The reason is that it is based on a false goal -- student achievement in curriculum. It is a mind-set held by our culture that causes policyholders to try to measure the wrong things in the wrong way. Standardized testing of reading, writing and arithmetic forces teachers to teach these basic skills as goals, as ends in and of themselves. They thus make school a dreary drudge of drills rather than an exciting place of inquiry into wonderful things to investigate. The NCLB law has forced teachers to make learning basic skills a very hard thing to do, contrary to natural ways of learning, different for each individual, that is actually easy and fun. The NCLB law has killed curiosity, imagination and the development of individual talents and interests in a whole generation of children.

NCLB has made teachers teach in ways that give students an aversion to learning. More students hate school and more good teachers are demoralized and leave for greener pastures than ever before.

I speak as a 58-year veteran teacher with solid evidence of these assertions. Please don't try to fix this terrible law. Hide it someplace and then try to make amends by returning education to the states where it belongs under the constitution. Only then is there any hope for building public school teaching into a profession where teachers are trusted to work with parents and students to decide what subject matter content is best for each individual child.

There is a reform plan with a different goal that can be used to replace NCLB. It is called "Educating for Human Greatness." In this 24-page plan, reading, writing, math and other disciplines are not taught as "goals," as ends in and of themselves, but as "tools" to help students grow in 7 dimensions of greatness, Identity, Inquiry, Interaction, Imagination, Initiative, Intuition and Integrity. This makes all the difference.

For more information contact:

Lynn Stoddard

Farmington, Utah

(801) 451-2554

Lynn Stoddard

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