A Suit That Doesn’t Fit

More talk of a state lawsuit against No Child Left Behind claiming it is an unfunded mandate. The law could use more funding to make its implementation more effective, but as a technical matter it is not an unfunded mandate.

The only “mandate”, the testing provisions, are funded at a minimal but technically sufficient level as this GAO study shows. There should be more funding for those provisions because kids deserve better than minimal (in practice cheap multiple choice tests), but garnering such support requires a political not judicial strategy.

Besides, No Child’s opponents look ridiculous arguing that the problem with a law they obviously hate is that it is underfunded. This law is awful, but it must be fully funded now! There’s a message…

Dog that Didn’t Bark Afterthought: Whatever happened to that vaunted NEA lawsuit against the “so called No Child Left Behind Act”?

Sensible Message Afterthought: Ted Kennedy and George Miller have the right idea here on message and policy. Support the law and fund it. Not one or the other.

Historical Afterthought: When did so-called progressives become such states’ rights fanatics?

Update! NCSL analysts think the Wisconsin lawsuit might be the vaunted lawsuit. Could be…the straight from talking points quotes in this article reveal it for the blatantly political exercise it is.

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