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NCLB Outrages

No Child Left Behind: Offshoring Work from Chicago to Calcutta

American companies that move jobs offshore have been harshly criticized, so it's surprising to learn that the U.S. government itself, through a little-known provision of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), is providing a taxpayer-funded windfall for tutoring companies in India.

NCLB requires school districts to offer tutoring to some students in schools that fail to meet the law's flawed adequate yearly progress requirements. Districts can contract with firms to provide that tutoring through computers and Internet hookups instead of classrooms, and, as a result, the United States is sending NCLB funds to tutoring companies in India
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. National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" reports that tutoring firms in India pay employees as little as $230 a month for full-time work.

The offshoring of NCLB will come as no surprise to critics of the Bush administration, which has done little to slow the flow of jobs overseas, or to critics of the U.S. Department of Education, which recently ordered American school districts and teachers to quit providing tutoring to their students. The effect of ED's decision, whatever its rationale, is that American students can get their reading and math tutoring from uncertified instructors in Calcutta, but not from certified teachers in Chicago.

With four years of President Bush's dismal job creation record, the worst since the Hoover administration, and with the administration's cavalier attitude toward offshoring guiding the next four years, Archie Bunker's nostalgic hopeó"Mister, we could use a man like Herbert Hoover again"
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--has become reality.

American Federation of Teachers


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