As the lame duck Congress wraps up and energy builds towards a new Congress and a second Obama term in office, I can't help but wishing that reauthorizing No Child Left Behind was something that was on everyone's first order of business for January and February.
The Obama administration's decision to allow states to request waivers from No Child Left Behind was a step in the right direction, but only a baby step. Four in five schools will be deemed "failing" if nothing stops the "train wreck" that NCLB will inflict.
In the case of college cheaters, we train students to define their worth by grades. Then we give them boring assignments, papers that don't require introspection. The answer is simple: we're measuring the wrong things.
The answers to improving education have to be holistic, and local. President Obama's good intentions of setting a tone unfortunately will not translate into more success until we deal with the whole puzzle.