Sunday, November 16, 2008

State vs. Federal Power: Education Policy - a state or national issue?

Amendment X to the U.S. Constitution reads:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.


1. Read the following articles about No Child Left Behind.

2. Consider the main arguments of both authors and answer the following question:

Does NCLB and federal education policies support or violate the 10th Amendment?

Article A) No Child Left Behind Act: An intrusion on state's rights? By Robert S. Sargent, Jr.

web posted March 7, 2005

On January 29 of this year, the Executive Committee of theNational Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) unanimouslyapproved the Final Report of the Task Force on No Child LeftBehind (The Report). According to their website (,where you can download the whole report) the "NCSL is abipartisan organization that…provides research, technicalassistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideason the most pressing state issues." The Report is divided into sixchapters that analyze in detail the problems state legislators havewith mainly two questions: "What do we need to do to make thelaw work and how can we effect improvements to it throughadditional congressional or administrative actions?" According to The Report, the goal of the No Child Left BehindAct that President Bush modeled after his program in Texas is"…to close or dramatically narrow the differences inachievement among American students that cross lines of skincolor, ethnicity, immigrant status and wealth." In this column I willsummarize the problems given in The Report, and then showhow a state is currently dealing with these problems. Starting with Chapter 2 (I will come back to Chapter 1) the firstproblem is how to deal with the Act's standardized testing and"...holding schools accountable for their progress." It seems thatthere is "…an unnecessary level of rigidity and questionablemethodology." For example, "NCLB mandates that schools beevaluated by comparing successive groups of students against astatic, arbitrary standard, not by tracking the progress ofstudents over time." And, "The law improperly identifies schoolsas ‘in need of improvement' by creating too many ways to ‘fail.'"Finally, "The law allows students to transfer from schools foundto be in need of improvement before the school has anopportunity to address specific individual deficiencies." Chapter 3 deals with the fact that certain aspects of NCLB arein conflict with the Disabilities Education Act. Chapter 4addresses the fact that the NCLB "…imposes a uniform set ofrequirements that all schools must meet," while not recognizingthat "Many urban and rural schools face unique challenges ineducating students." Chapter 5 deals with the "highly qualifiedteacher clause" that "…is particularly problematic for hard-to-staff schools." And Chapter 6 deals with the costs of complyingwith the Act. "In the best case scenario, federal fundingmarginally covers the costs of complying with the administrativeprocesses of the law." Now Chapter 1: Is the Act itself constitutional? Past SupremeCourt decisions have held that it is constitutional if Congressblackmails the states by withholding money if states don't complywith a mandate. For example, if North Carolina doesn't pass astate law that meets Federal requirements for legal alcohol levelwhen driving, they will lose federal highway money. However,the federal government cannot coerce a state into complying witha mandate. We will see that last year when Utah asked thequestion, what if we just opt out of the Act? "…the U.S.Department of Education responded that not only would Utahlose its Title I funds, it would forfeit nearly twice that much inother formula and categorical funds…" That's coercion! (A billopting out of the Act was introduced last year by Rep. MargaretDayton. According to Rep. Dayton, the feds contribution toUtah of $105 million is "…about 5 percent of our state budget,but NCLB directs 100 percent of our state education. I didn'tfeel like it was worth that 5 percent." The Utah Senate didn'tagree.) The Report also addresses the other constitutional issue:the 10th Amendment. The Act "…pits the 10th Amendment,which reserves the powers to the states, against the spendingclause of Article I." For us Constitutional Conservatives, this isnonsense. The 10th Amendment couldn't be plainer: Education isnot an area that's delegated to the United States, therefore it isan area reserved to the states. Period. Unlike idealists like me, Isuppose that the NCSL must deal with reality. There actually is aDepartment of Education. Oh, well. Utah (the state that gave Bush his largest margin of victory) injust the last couple of weeks, is again challenging the Act.According to the Salt Lake Tribune, on February 18, "Membersof the Senate Education Committee unanimously passed twoUtah House measures meant to keep the federal No Child LeftBehind Act at bay. One was a resolution…to recognize Utah'sefforts to measure student competency and sustain qualityschools. The other was… (an) effort to mediate the powerstruggle between state priorities and President Bush's federalmandate to reform public schools with imposed standardizedtests." In other words, "state priorities trump NCLB – even if itmeans breaking the federal law." So how has Washington reacted? Tim Bridgewater, Gov. JonHuntsman Jr.'s education deputy said the bill "has been helpful inopening some dialogue with the Department of Education." Soon February 24, the Tribune wrote, "Federal education officialssay Utah's 8,500 veteran elementary school teachers are highlyqualified after all." On other issues? Bridgewater said, "We hit abit of an impasse…" Last week, Utah's unanimously passed billcompletely opting out of the Act now had the votes in theSenate, but the Bush administration put pressure on GovernorHuntsman, and the governor convinced the legislature to take nomore action until April 20 so that they would have more time tonegotiate with the feds. What does all this mean? When a state like Utah with legislatorslike Dayton, stands up to the federal government, it can getresults. It can also empower other states to action. Kim Cobb inthe Houston Chronicle wrote: "Fifteen states have introducedlegislation in the first two months of this year challenging the lawat a variety of levels…(and) many state leaders are taking theircue…from Dayton." For us Republicans who say we admire a Joe Liebermanbecause he has principles that he won't compromise, even to hisparty, we have to admire Ms. Dayton for her efforts to defendher state even against her president. And for us constitutionalists,we have to love a legislator who places her state's priorities overthe federal government. High five to the 10th Amendment!

Article B) "The Tenth Amendment Challenge?" By Steve Lilienthal October 12, 2005Congressmen.

Too few Congressmen take it upon themselves to appear before the debt clock that flashes the size of our mounting debts. The appropriation for the CDGB program is over $4 billion for FY 2005.The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. Most mature Americans do not promote use of illegal, addictive drugs, particularly by younger Americans. The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) advertising and PR campaign urges Americans to talk to their children. It's a useful recommendation.The question needs to be asked: Given the current situation, there is one more reason for parents to talk to their children - to tell them about the bill we are passing on to them - the interest on the national debt -- thanks to our failure to curtail unconstitutional spending on programs like that of the ONDCP. The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign received appropriations of $119,040,000 in FY 2005. Kids may be doing drugs but does ONDCP's media campaign have its own addiction problem?The Legal Services Corporation (LSC). The Constitution assures the accused in a criminal case a right to counsel. Ken Boehm, chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center, and Counsel to the Legal Services Corporation in the George Herbert Walker Bush Administration, points out, "There is no constitutional right to file a lawsuit at government expense."The attorneys funded by this quasi-government agency have the discretion to pick their cases and often they are tilting against businesses, farmers and landlords. A House Budget Committee report from the 1990s emphasized, "A phase-out of federal funding for LSC will not eliminate free legal aid for the poor. State and local governments, bar associations, and other organizations already provide substantial legal aid to the poor." Appropriations in FY 2005: $330,803,705 (after two rescissions).The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Americans spend over $25.5 billion on the arts. Other than very limited projects in consonance with portraying our national history, there is no reason for the hundred million or so spent by NEA. It's great work if you can get an NEA grant but providing a subsidy for the arts is simply not a function of the federal government assigned by our Constitution. Artists will not starve without the NEA; they just will have to compete harder for all the other money out there. NEA appropriations for FY 2005, including two modest recissions made by Congress, was $121,263,000.Two ideas that can be of use in attempting to rein in Big Government have been advanced by Rep. John Shadegg (R-AZ) and Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS).Shadegg is sponsor of The Enumerated Powers Act (H.R. 2458), that would require each bill introduced in Congress to include a statement citing constitutional authority. Shadegg has introduced this bill in several Congresses. He argued in 2001 that the Enumerated Powers Act was needed because:"Our Founding Fathers believed the grant of specific rather than legislative powers to the national government would be one of the central mechanisms for protecting our freedoms while allowing us to achieve the objectives best accomplished through a national government. One of the most important things Congress can do is to honor and abide by the principles embodied in the Constitution -- no more, no less. Respecting the Tenth Amendment is the first way to ensure that the genius of the Constitution and its division of power between the national government,the States, and the people continues to guide our nation."If enacted, Shadeg's Enumerated Powers Act would become the constitutionalist version of Consumer Reports.After extensive research by the Free Congress Foundation, Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) and Representative Todd Tiahrt (R-KA) have introduced the Commission on the Accountability and Review of Federal Agencies Act (S.1155 and H.R. ), more frequently referred to as "CARFA." Many conservatives, upon hearing the title of Brownback's bill, will instantly say, "The last thing we need is another commission examining the problem. We know what's wrong; what we need is action!" Brownback's bill, if enacted into law, would provide just that.CARFA members would be appointed by the President and the Congressional Leadership. They would undertake an extensive study of federal agencies and programs, specifically looking for those that are wasteful, duplicative or simply obsolescent.The bill does not specifically mandate a Tenth Amendment test. Pressure would need to be exerted on those who appoint, particularly those representing the more conservative party, to place commissioners who respect the purpose of the Tenth Amendment and want to see it reflected in Federal Government expenditures. The Commission would issue its recommendations in a report to Congress which then would vote up or down on the whole package.The Executive Branch and Congress have each proven themselves to be careless in recent decades when it comes to exercising appropriate caution in spending taxpayer money. Worse, they have ignored the Constitution and its limits on federal power.The result is mounting deficits, leading to large interest payments on the national debt. That is not the legacy we want to leave to posterity.It's time to start pruning the federal government. (Reforming "third rail" entitlement programs, such as Medicaid and Social Security, is vital but something which Congress and the Executive Branch habitually defer.)The Constitution is clear about what the responsibilities of the federal government are and Members of Congress have taken an oath to uphold the course charted by our Founding Fathers. It's time Congress started to apply "The Tenth Amendment Challenge" to domestic spending.

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rOebelLa said...

The No Child Left Behind Act was passed by President George W. Bush , that was proposed in order to narrow the differences in achievement among American students that have different skin colors, ethnicity, immigrant status and wealth. It was created and enacted originally in Texas. This violates the 10th Amendment which states if a power is not delegated to the United States by the constitution, or prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
This act should only be passed in states that possible have a large number of students that are left behind due to the issues stated above. Education is not delegated in the U.S which means that representatives in the states should have the ability to approve of this act in their sate. In Article A it sates that Utah asked “What if we just opt out of the Act?” The DOE responded that not only would Utah loose their Title 1 funds, which is the largest federal funded educational program, but they would also be forfeiting nearly twice that in other funds. With society today, there is basically no more need for a state government because the federal government makes a majority or decisions.
The Act extensively goes against the 10th Amendment and its reserved powers to the states. “No Child Left Behind Act: An intrusion on State’s Rights?” indicates how one states decision are reflected on other. The amendments no longer fit today’s society therefore it’s difficult to show the relation. With more and more kids dropping out and failing laws should be focused on keeping education on the right track. The young society today is America’s future, and without the proper education, America could collapse.

Optimistically speaking, states could choose to opt out of the act, as Utah wanted to, but in the end It would make education situations worse. After budgets cuts already being made, and then funds being taken a way, it would just be better, and somewhat beneficial if students were able to just move along to the next year in school with teachers being confident that the student learned all the material..What do you think?

-Rosa Carucci

Dana Pistilli said...

No Child Left Behind Act: An Intrusion on State's Rights? by Robert S. Sargeant mentions the different ideas thought about throughout each state. It originated in Texas where President George W. Bush proposed passed the No Child Left Behind Act. As said in this article, Bush said the mission of this Act is"…to close or dramatically narrow the differences in achievement among American students that cross lines of skin color, ethnicity, immigrant status and wealth." According to this article, neither the Constitution nor the Tenth Amendment is supported by the purpose of this act. The act should pertain to give the people and states power and be left for them to discuss. It should not be limited to the branches of government, but instead to the submissive states. As an example from this article, a student could be failing in one school but immediately transfer to another one which they could basically have their records come clean. This could easily give students a reason for failing if they are unhappy with the school they are in. I agree with Rosa because if everyone keeps on failing in their grades and gets to have the easy way out, it might cause America to fail in their economy as well.

On the other hand, Does Federal Spending Meet “The Tenth Amendment Challenge?” by Steve Lilienthal discusses on conserving the budgets of problems that young Americans have. Some programs such as The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign and The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) spend the government’s money on advertising ways to help these children from solving their personal problems. Even though this is essential to our society, there are much more important troubles in America should be spending their money on. The Constitution does not completely state that there are educational policies. The Tenth Amendment points out that the people or the states of the people should take upon their own duties. The government, or delegates of the United States, should not have to help out people in order to pay for their fees. An example that the government does to help the people that, in my opinion, seems wrong is providing them with Food Stamps. By giving people this privilege of using food stamps could let people take advantage of the government’s money. If people want to buy things, then they should apply for jobs not rely on the government to pay for their needs. Food stamps should help severely unfortunate, poor people. Not just anyone who thinks they can’t handle their bills and fees.

Altogether, I feel that the NCLB and federal education violate the Tenth Amendment. They violate it by expressing their actions through paying for developments of the American citizens.

laurelhaim said...

Passed By President George W. Bush the No Child Left Behind Act, was created to make the differences in education between every student smaller. Education is not outlined in the Constitution which means the state gets the power to decide according to the tenth amendment. The Tenth amendment states that the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
The No Child Left Behind Act was passed by the federal government not giving the states the power.

The act violates the tenth amendment.

The federal government does not have power over the education in every state which means that education is enumerated to the states power. With the federal government passing this act it took the states power away.

Today the states government is weak. The constitution is not being respected like it should. The federal government is taking advantage of their power.

Checks and balances are a system used to protect one part of the government from becoming too strong. The system should be applied to federal vs. state powers as well.

States such as Utah wanted to opt out of the plan, ironically going against Bush, after giving him the largest margin of victory, but couldn't since they're title 0ne funds were threatened to be cut short.

Like Rosa said, it would be easier to just pass the student and keep them moving then to hold them back. Holding them back may only make matters of education worst.

Although the act violates the tenth amendment the only option is too lose your education funding or keep the students educated.

katie said...

The no child left behind policies defiantly goes against the tenth amendment. The tenth amendment says that freedoms hat are no granted in the constitution are to be decided by the state. By George Bush enforcing the no child left behind polices, he striped states of their right to decide how and what they as a state thinks is best for the people of there state. Of coarse some people are going to think that the no child left behind polices is going to do wonders for the educational system. All though this polices may help out the children who may be less represented in the school system, not ever school is the same and this program may be unnecessary is certain schools. Not only may the no child left behind policies do more damage then help, but it also completely violets the tenth amendment in more then one way. The first way in which the tenth amendment is violated by the no child left behind policies is it takes away state power and gives the central government more power, which is what the tenth amendment was supposed to avoid. It is surprising how the government would completely ignore the tenth amendment and set this policies in place, even if it was supposed to do good for Americans it really just violated the agreements made so long ago and gives the central government more power then it should have. I agree with Rosa were she says that it would be easier to pass the students then to hold them back, I feel that holding back students is a terrible idea because it just hurts them more and it is to easy to be held back and not enough ways to try and pass student.

Katie McSherry

Briana Kohm said...

The No Child Left Behind Act is an act stating " close or dramatically narrow differences in achievment among American students that cross the lines of skin color, ethnicity, immigrant status, and wealth." This Act was passed by President George bush after Texas modeled this program.
The law allows students to transfer from schools found to be in need of improvement before the school has an opportunity to address specific individual deficiencies. There is also a highly qualified teachers clause. Along with this comes standerdize testing. If the states do not agree with the act then they would lose Title 1 funds and would forfeit them from nearly twice that much from other funds. They are basicallt black mailing the states saying if you do not do this you wont get the fundings needed.
The Tenth amendment which is the powers not delegated to the United States by the constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
This ammendment is clearly broken and violated when it comes to the No Child Left Behind Act. It is not right to black mail a state and say they must do something that they dont feel is right for the people.
Katie stated that it striped states of their right to decide how and what they as a state thinks is best for the people of there state. This is a very strong point to make. If the states are not getting the right funding because they disagree with the act they get jipped out of the proper amount of money to help the state. Yet if they believe this act is wrong and stil go along with it how are they helping the people.
The states should have been able to vote upon this decision before it was made by the President. The tenth amendment was clearly violated and it is certainly the wrong way to deal with it when a state disagrees.

Robert Keller said...

In 2005, President George W. Bush passed the No Child Left Behind Act in order to unify the educational systems of the United States. The On Child Left Behind Act is highly controversial because it violates the Tenth Amendment by infringing on the states' right to control their education system. There is nothing in the constitution that allows the federal government to control an individual state's education system.
The No Child Left Behind Act was devised to eliminate the differences in achievement across races, economic conditions, and immigration status. Every school covered by the act is held responsible for their own advancement, which is unnecessarily strict. Students are allowed to transfer to another school for advancement that can not be achieved in their current school. However, the student's current school has no say in the matter. The act set up guidelines for every school in the country without recognizing each school's individual needs.
The No Child Left Behind Act infringes on each individual states' rights. The tenth Amendment gives the states control of issues not stated in the constitution. Nowhere in the constitution does it say the federal government has the right to control the country's educational system. The Act also punishes states that do not ratify the act. By cutting it’s funding. The federal government does not have the right to punish a state because they don't agree with them on controversial matters.
The No Child Left Behind Act was poorly planned and unconstitutional. The Tenth Amendment is violated by this act. A state has the right to decide if they want to ratify an act that would limit their power. The federal government has no right to persecute a state because the state has its own agenda. The states that did not ratify the act should call for its repeal.
I agree with Rosa that each state has the right to decide if they want to ratify The No Child Left Behind Act. States that have no use for NCLB should not be required to follow the act. I also feel the Tenth Amendment is very confusing.

brianne hannafey said...

The No Child Let Behind act was passed on January 29th, 2005 by George W. Bush. The reason for this bill was so that regardless of someone’s ethnic background, wealth, skin color, and citizenship every student will be able to reach the same academic height. Article A brought up that there are now too many was to fail. There are so many tests given to children now a days that there is a chance that they will fail some. For example, high school students in New York and in California take regents in every subject, and if they don’t pass them all they cannot graduate. If a child can pass the class there should be no reason for a test to prove it, and anyway there is the SAT that every state takes to get into a college. Another thing brought up in the stating of the clauses in Article A is that teachers should be highly qualified, which means students will get a higher quality education. The only problem with the NCLB Act is that not every state agrees, which brings up the problem of the 10th Amendment. The 10th Amendment gave every state had their own sort of power, and the states made decisions for themselves.
I agree with what everyone said this No Child Left Behind Act definitely violates the 10th Amendment. One state says no but yet the act gets passed anyway. What happened to every state makes their own decision? The 10th Amendment rarely is followed anymore, for example if the president makes a law everyone in every state must follow it. There is representation of every state, but lets be serious everyone follows mostly all the same rules except of little state rules that the local governments makes up. Rules that are made by the president and national congress are follow by everyone, but simple things like driving ages vary in every state. The 10th Amendment is almost obsolete.

Sam.L.Esposito said...

The No Child Left Behind Act was established by former President George W. Bush. He formed this Act for American students who were not accepted into schools because of their race, color of skin, ethnicity, religion and wealth. The No Child Left Behind Policy violates the Amendment 10 which is," the powers not delegated to the united states by constitution, nor prohibited by to the states, are reserved to the states respectively or to the people."
The No Child Left Behind Policy takes away the states right to decide what is best for their educational system for the students. Major issue of race and who they are as a person left a large number of students out of school or unhappy with the education system. The policy extensively went against the conditions of the 10th Amendment. With the federal government passing this act it took away the states power. In today's society the state's power is rather weak because the Constitution is not looked up as highly as it was earlier.
The No Child Left Behind Policy is the only way that will ensure an American students education. If we were to get rid of the No Child Left Behind Act then there will be no way to keep the American education system at it's peak.
I agree with Katie McSherry's view on the No Child Left Behind Act and the way it violates the 10th Amendment. She also stated how George W. Bush had Stripped some states of their ability to think for their selves which made the state government weaker.

Simit Christian said...

The Tenth Amendment, equally important as the other 9, seems to be ignored when referring to the No Child Left Behind Act. The NCLB Act has been labeled unconstitutional by several states due to it violation of the previously mentioned tenth Amendment. Furthermore, some claim the act is an overextension of Federal power in the country as each state receives guidelines and is asked to improve if necessary to raise student achievement. “No Child Left Behind Act: An intrusion on state's rights?” by Robert S. Sargent and “Does Federal Spending Meet The Tenth Amendment Challenge?" by Steve Lilienthal explain how state liberties are sacrificed by the NCLB act, which originated in Texas.
Sargent and Lilienthal both accuse the federal government for disrupting the current and upcoming progress of the individual state schooling systems. Furthermore, both suggest that federal policy has damaged American schools. Sargent defends the states, arguing the Education is not enlisted in the Constitution therefore states must posses the ability to regulate this part of society. While, Lilienthal portrays how Federal spending on educational purposes is mishandled
Although the act ensures that student accomplishments will be more unbiased among various racial, ethnic and social groups, there are certain economic flaws that need to be addressed with the Act. Depriving States who oppose the act, like Utah, of funds is definitely unacceptable on the national government’s behalf.
The intentions for the Act were justified, but the results of Act are intolerable. The federal government’s decision to check the progress of state schools is beneficial, because corruption in the schooling system is limited. To solve this issue and end the controversy, the federal government must consider both sides, for and against the act, and take note of state opinions and also the citizens.
Overall, the tenth amendment needs to be revised because it does not refer to, or prohibit the national government from creating legislature, like the NCLB, that is not mentioned or enlisted in the constitution.
*Laurel Haim’s final comment regarding states not having an option doesn’t seem to make sense because states can cooperate with each other and with a strong fight can have the NCLB act repealed.

Lightspeed2552 said...

Ever since the Constitutional Convention more than two centuries ago, there has been a long conflict between state and national/federal powers. In article A, our federal government has breached the powers of the state government by passing the national No Child Left Behind Act. The intention, as told by President Bush, was to help children of certain ethnic groups and races keep up in their classes. However, there were flaws in some of the chapters of this act. For one chapter, the act is going against the Disabilities Education Act while, for another chapter, the act, as stated by the author, has a questionable way of measuring students' progress, but the biggest problem is with the first chapter; was this act constitutional? This act breached the states' powers which completely disregarded the 10th Amendment of the Constitution. Education was a state matter, but the federal powers started to blackmail states that refused to accept the act by taking away their money.
Article B relates to the first by explaining how the federal powers are being unfair to the states and the whole country by passing acts that aren't necessary for the free nation's survival. Many of these acts, such as The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign, are just a huge waste of money, bringing us to the economic disaster we're in today!
To Brianne: I don't believe that the 10th Amendment is obsolete but just ignored.

Michael Appelgate
- H block

PeAcHyRoC92 said...

Many people may not know it, but in Alabama it is illegal to play dominoes on a Sunday. In Florida it is prohibited to have sexual relationships with a porcupine, and it is illegal to rob a bank and then shoot a bank teller with a water pistol in Louisiana. As humorous and amusing this may sound, the truth of the matter is that these are laws issued by the States individually. The federal government cannot have power or influence in what laws a State feels is essential to its people. The authority for states to have power goes back to the days of the Articles of Confederation and the New Jersey Plan, which issued equal rights to all states. However, the rights that states have should not be interfered with by the federal government because it contradicts the 10th Amendment. The 10th Amendment states that every power not given to the federal government by the Constitution, are still the rights granted to the people.

In 2005 George W.Bush instituted the “No Child Left Behind Act “ to ensure that make sure that every child received an education that would enrich their learning. Making sure that students received a fair education no matter what one’s race or ethnicity, George W.Bush hoped of setting up this organization for the benefit of students. The Act issued that every state had to follow these guidelines andregulations and chastised those who ignored. The NCLB Act is extremely unconstitutional as illustrated by Robert S. Sargent and Steve Liliental. Yes, the NCLB Act has its benefits as it helps check up on the status of schools, but violating an amendment creates controversy.

Once again the federal government took away the rights from the Constitution. If the Bill of Rights states that citizens have certain rights, then why does the government continue to disregard them? It is up to the states to decide whether or not they approve or disapprove of the Act instituted by Bush. The government in many current situations has violated the Ten Amendments. Agreeing with Rosa, some of the amendments no longer fit in today’s society. It is as if the government is only concerned about what will give them an advantage. The No Child Left Behind Act is a mockery of what James Madison established to the United States over 200 years ago. The federal government cannot have control over what a state does because it places restrictions on the power of the states as well as the citizens.

Racquel Wood

PeAcHyRoC92 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aleksandra said...

:::Firstly, let me just say that Racquel's post is hilarious! Why do such laws still exist? I honestly hope they're still not in effect (I mean the dominoes thing, not the porcupine law). :::

Does Federal Spending Meet "Tenth Amendment Challenge?" by Steve Lilienthal discusses the increasing influence the national government has over the state government. He expresses criticism of not only the great spending of the national government, but also its unnecessary involvement in education. Education everywhere and at all times has always been considered to be a local responsibility. However, we are slowly allowing more of the education systems to be under a common federal government. Beginning with the National Education Association and the Department of Education in 1979, the public school system is now governed by the No Child Left Behind act OF 2001. Though I personally do not see the faults of having a consistent school system and Lilienthal doesn't express any himself, the act undermines the privileges left to the State government by the Tenth Amendment. Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which specifies that powers not granted to the federal government nor forbidden to state governments are reserved powers of the individual states, cannot be disregarded just like all of the other amendments should not be. As the bookbinding artist of the previous post said, the amendments cannot be seen individually but as a group that can be either accepted or not. Steve Lilienthal would be in agreement. He resents the involvement of the federal government in the school system, clearly seeing such a responsibility as the business of the state itself (as the Tenth Amendment states).

Robert Sargent, author of No Child Left Behind: An intrusion on state's rights? , also expresses deep dissatisfaction with the NCLB act. He also deems it to be constitutional. According to Sargent, "the 10th amendment could not be plainer: education is not an area that's delegated to the United States, therefore it is an area reserved to the states." Beyond this point, Sargent also emphasizes the coercion used by the government as a way of passing the acts throughout all of the states. When Utah expressed an opinion about ping out of the act, the Department of Education responded wt a threat of cutting off education funding. I thought manipulation and coercion were nonexistent anymore, and I guess Sargent expected it to remain as innocent as every American would wish to be.

I agree with both Lilienthal and Sargent, and I admit that the NCLB act contradicts the Tenth Amendment. However, as I expressed in previous posts, the Amendments should not be regarded as if set in stone until the end of time. Doesn't it make more sense for all the students of a single country to aim for the same standards and balance out American public schools. We may live in different states, but we live in the same country. We shouldn't forget that. If I could have my way, a nationally accepted curriculum would exist, making the states more united and therefore more powerful. In fact, I would love for all the countries to speak one language, have a single currency, and likewise a single education system. Who cares about freedom when only imperfections in society are ever acknowledged? Back to the point, I believe a unification like the NCLB Act could only bring about a positive change, even though the Tenth Amendment was altered a bit.

Aleksandra Makowska

90's kid said...

The Tenth amendment does give the States the power to set limitations and rules on laws already made. However, we all know that the Federal government have more power than the State governments. In America, it is a law that all children be granted the right to an education ,yet it does not adress topics like when can a child drop out of school or even the age that a child can be officially exempt from public schools. Theses topics are generally left up to the states. In New York City children must go to school till the age of 16, other wise they are allowed to drop out. The NYC public schools officially stop caring for a child once he or she turns 20. These guidelines differ from state to state.

I have read both of the articles and and the question of the No Child Left Behind Act on checks and balances. Regardless of what anyone says or of thier view on frederaion or not, by the constitution the Act is unconstitutional.

President Bush does not have the right to enforce the act on the states. He could have raised education to the states as an issue but not have enforced it. Regardless to the amount of children failing in school or budget cuts. Bush actions add illigitmacy to the constitution and what is a man/ nation without its word? How can the nation feel safe when its constituion is being stepped over? This is not fair for the states.

Also, regarding to the second article... Everyone is granted the right to freedom of expression regardless of the negativity. If Bush doesn't like it than he sould change the bill of rights and not give people hardache by picking and choosing the people he wants to sue.

Khadijat O:).

90's kid said...

P.S I agree with both Rosa and Raquel in saying that some of the amendments do not correspond with today's society. Some one ought a change it before America turns chaotic.

Ms. Francis said...

Rosa: E
Dana: E
Laurel: G+
katie: E-
Brianna: E
Brianne G-: The president can't make a law; acts are something different
Sam G: I'm unclear- you agree with Katie but also state that NCLB is necessary to promote academic achievement. Are you suggesting that sometimes it's OK for an official to ignore the Constitution when it's in the nation's best interest (this is a popular academic/historical opinion, and worth exploration.)

Simit- E-:
thoughful challenge to Laurel's positon; I think what she's saying is that under the current administration and now that the policy is in full swing, it's difficult to work against.

Michael- E-: Thoughtful and unique post; can it be argued that "culture war" acts - those that aim to reform the culture by limiting social ills- are intended and connected to the improvement of the nation's economy?

Raquel- E: Well written - humorous and informative!

Alexandra- E: I think the dominoes thing dates back to it being a betting game and Alabama's roots as a religious "church" state - though don't quote me, I 'm just assuming. Overall, I think your post articulates what Sam was getting at. Nice work.

Khadijat-E-: I remind you that the President CANT change the BOR, but assume you were looking to make a point with that suggestion. Overall, thought-provoking post.

Vince said...

The NCLB Act most definitely violates the 10th Amendments for every reason possible. The tenth Amendment states that "Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled." This means that every individual state is allowed to chose it's own custom methods of functioning it's society. Bush's NCLB Act is a total violation of the Bill of Rights tenth Amendment.
Respectively, this should not be an issue at all. The 10th Amendment clearly and undeniably states that all states have the right to individual changes. Yes, this is a very overwrought issue at hand even today, but the fact remains that each state has the right of imposing and rejecting any sort of law, even if it was a direct order from the President himself. Being forced to comply to such demands is a slap to the face of liberty, and a kick in the shins for Democracy. If the government has the unauthorized Right to order such devious and incisive acts against the people, why is it that the people have not spoken out against this prudent injustice which has befallen this great nation? The sheer thought of resisting government regime, I suppose, which would lead to the individuals life at a dead end.
I have only just found out of such an ineffable injustice to the "land of the free and home of the brave", which leads me to believe that all the Amendments may soon fall victim to the government. It's just like our last blog, where Richard Minsky was humourously and logistically explaining how the government is trying to take away our Amendments one by one. The most surprising outcome of the NCLB doctrine is that it actually approved with the public, and with a thunderous applause I might unfortunately add.
With approval, the first article "No Child Left Behind Act: An intrusion on states rights?" by Robert S. Sargent Jr. is an article describing the process and reasons for the NCLB Act in a free flow attitude. Then, the author begins to question the methods of the government, and state how the government is wrong.
Also thinking about the economy issues of the NCLB Act, when the act was passed, it was predicted that America would become a dumb place. Yes, the last sentence does sound blunt, but true. Letting children who are not well educated enough to the next grade up will not only slow down the rest of the class, but perhaps cause a education breakdown with the system. George Bush claims the line of discrimination and color will cease once all children are allowed to move up a grade whether they deserve it or not. George Bush's deed was noble, but the cause was unjust.

Student Response: Simit, I do not agree with your last couple of sentencing regarding the way the 10th Amendment should be revised. This historic document was passed down by the Founding Father, the ones who made the foundation of America. What gives anyone the sudden right, or should I say, the sudden privilege to even appeal for a change of the Amendments? You state“Overall, the tenth amendment needs to be revised because it does not refer to, or prohibit the national government from creating legislature, like the NCLB, that is not mentioned or enlisted in the constitution.” The Amendments all have clear meaning, and changing the Amendments would only tarnish what are Founding Fathers sacrificed so much for just two and a half centuries ago. There is no reason for a sudden turbulent restyle of the Bill of Rights. Currently, the Amendments are in a state of flux, and disrupting anything would be a metamorphism to the current system our very basis of society needs to uphold the Democratic stature of a superpower in the modern day world of today's peaking competition!

Ms. Francis said...

Vincent - E-: Throughtful, articulate post, but late.

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