For further discussion and debate, please visit our Facebook feed. Here is the exchange of Betsy DeVos and Senator Tim Kaine about the IDEA and accountability. The concern is that DeVos would leave all matters about IDEA and FAPE to the states – which would not help if states are ‘bad’ and not providing appropriate support to students. She does allude to ‘strings attached’ which could mean withdrawal of federal support.
But also at issue is the freedom of certain charter schools to have standards that are individualized and approved by states. Senator Bill Cassidy’s dyslexia charter in Louisiana, for instance has 300 children enrolled but has been failed by the state because parents opt-out of state testing. In public schools, low performing student groups are often paired with advanced (highly capable) programs so that their schools as a whole can meet state standards.
It is a complex issue and Senate confirmation hearing leave little time to explore their positions.