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U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings Highlights No Child Left Behind at West Virginia State Capitol, Visits Saint Albans High School


U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings and Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito today hosted an education policy roundtable discussion on No Child Left Behind at the West Virginia State Capitol Building with First Lady of West Virginia Gayle Manchin, West Virginia State Superintendent Steve Paine and West Virginia policymakers, educators, teachers, parents and business leaders. Secretary Spellings applauded West Virginia’s efforts to raise content standards of assessments and discussed opportunities for improvement and innovation under No Child Left Behind.

Secretary Spellings also today visited Saint Albans High School in Saint Albans, W.V., and delivered remarks to students, teachers and school officials at a school assembly, recognizing the progress Saint Albans High School students have made under No Child Left Behind.

“I commend West Virginia for narrowing achievement gaps in sixth grade math and science and for raising the graduation requirement for the class of 2010 to four years of math. The success of students at Saint Albans High School demonstrates progress that West Virginia is making towards getting every student performing on grade level,” said Secretary Spellings. “Six years after No Child Left Behind changed the education game in this nation, we can be proud of where it has brought us. The law’s core principles now guide our conversation on education, and now is the time to build on that foundation.”

At the policy roundtable, Secretary Spellings commended West Virginia for being one of the first seven states to have approved science assessments. Secretary Spellings also applauded the state’s efforts to start raising standards, noting that West Virginia’s proficiency levels have been among the lowest in the nation. In addition, Secretary Spellings discussed other opportunities for improvement that could help build on West Virginia’s progress such as reducing n-size to prevent students from slipping through the cracks.

Secretary Spellings also emphasized the need to equip every child with a highly qualified education and prepare them for the 21st century global economy. She urged that as a nation we must find ways to address consensus areas such as employing growth models to allow schools to measure individual student performance over time; using a more nuanced accountability system to distinguish between schools missing performance goals across the board and those who come within range; taking more aggressive steps to address and improve high school graduation rates; ensuring that more eligible students are taking advantage of free tutoring; and doing a better job of recruiting and preparing good teachers and getting them in to schools where they are needed most.

In January, Secretary Spellings marked the sixth anniversary of No Child Left Behind with President Bush in Chicago, where he charged her with visiting States to discuss how the federal government can work together with them to move forward under No Child Left Behind. Following her visit to West Virginia, Secretary Spellings will continue the dialogue on No Child Left Behind and priorities for 2008 next week with a trip to New York.

To view Mapping West Virginia’s Educational Progress for 2008, please visit

For Mapping America’s Educational Progress 2008, visit


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