Federal programs are rich in acronyms, weak on effectiveness, writes Cato’s Andrew Coulson on Pajamas Media.
President Bush signed the bipartisan America COMPETES act on August 9th, with the acronymic goal of Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education and Science. Come September, Congress will debate reauthorization of the 5-year-old No Child Left Behind act, or NCLB, which aimed to improve math and reading performance. But before our federal representatives serve up another acronym-laden education program, Americans might want to signal for the waiter, because thereâ€™s a fly in Washingtonâ€™s alphabet soup: these programs will not, indeed cannot, fix our schools.
. . . If Americans want their children genuinely prepared to compete in the world economy, they will have to demand that their schools â€“ public and private â€“ be forced to compete on a free and level playing field for the privilege of serving them. And they would be wise to stay away from the alphabet soup.
Coulson’s approach to NCLB is “End It Don’t Mend It.”