U.S. Secretary of
Education Rod Paige today announced the awarding of $3.5 million
to the Education Leaders Council to launch a nationwide initiative
aimed at developing state models of action plans for putting the
principles of President Bush's No Child Left Behind Act in
Through the Following The
Leaders Project, ELC will identify states that can 'lead by
example,' and help them establish a primer on assessment and
accountability that others can use.
In order to develop real–life examples of the
new law in action, the project will work with a select number of
states and schools to develop an integrated accountability and
information system from the schoolhouse to the statehouse. These
pilot sites will demonstrate the promise of the No Child Left
Behind Act once fully implemented.
"Seeing is believing, and this project will show
our whole nation what is possible when the essential elements of
reform are put in place," Paige said. "We expect this initiative
to dramatically boost achievement for the students it serves, but
also to leverage fundamental change throughout the nation's
At its core, the project will provide tools to
educators, parents and administrators to help them use student
assessment data to improve instruction. These tools, developed by
Project Achieve, will be made available to 15–50 schools in up to
20 states. In addition, Project Achieve's database of
instructional resources will be available to all teachers in
The project will also provide intensive
technical assistance to policymakers in these states to help them
develop robust accountability plans in full compliance of NCLB.
AccountabilityWorks, a non–profit organization with expertise
in standards, assessments and accountability, will provide the
The initiative will also make the Teacher
Advancement Program (TAP) available to all participating schools.
This program, developed by the Milken Family Foundation, is a bold
new strategy to attract, retain and motivate talented people to
the teaching profession. It is based on five key principles:
multiple career paths; market–driven compensation;
performance–based accountability; ongoing, applied professional
growth; and expanding the supply of high–quality educators.
The entire project will be thoroughly evaluated
by the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, a private foundation active
in education reform and educational research.
The Education Leaders Council is a non–profit
organization that provides a national voice for state leaders who
are transforming public education and a strategic network for
reform minded leaders that is independent and nonpartisan.
The grant is from the Fund for the Improvement
of Education (FIE), under the Office of Educational Research and
Improvement. FIE supports activities that stimulate reform and
improve teaching and learning.