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Rep. Campbell admits “No Child Left Behind” is a Failure; Touts his Education Record?!

For any IUSD parent who sent John Campbell emails or, as a PTA member, lobbyied for equalization by visiting his office during his time as a representative in Sacramento knows you’d be better off banging your head against the wall. 

The same thing was true when Dick Ackerman represented us in the state Senate and how Chuck DeVore represents our education interests in the Assembly.  It’s a trip to nowhere fast, followed by critical comments about the teacher’s union, and a “see you soon” wish with a “thanks for stopping by, but I’m voting with my party.”  It’s a disheartening venture to say the least.

So to my suprise to get a postcard from Rep. John Campbell — official Congressional communication no less — touting the Congressman’s admiration for the great school system in Irvine.  Campbell wants to let Irvine voters know he’s a co-sponsor for HR 1717, otherwise known as the A-Plus Act that puts the authority of our kid’s education “back where it belongs: with the states, paretns, schools and public.  Large and unwieldy bureaucracies like that created with the No Child Left Behind program have proven time and again that they simply don’t work.”

That’s a stunning admission from a conservative Congressman that a George W. Bush program is a failure and it’s IS a failure for two reasons: NCLB focuses on helping kids pass a test rather than teaching critical thinking skills and the GOP majority Congress never fully funded the program created an unfunded federal mandate for education that passes on costs to states and local districts.  And in fairness, the Democratic dominated Congress has fared no better in fully funding federal mandates for NCLB and special education. But in Irvine, we’ve begged Campbell for more local control for years, only to be told he couldn’t do anything about it.

But for Campbell to hype this co-sponsorship of a bill as leadership in education represents a platform build on a wet tissue. 

John Campbell has a horrible record on education:

The National Education Association has given Campbell a grade of F in 2006, 2007 and 2008.

The American Association of University Women give Campbell a zero.

The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development also give Campbell a zero.

The National Association for College Admission Counseling, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and The Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) also give Campbell a big fat zero.

Campbell has voted no on HR 3221 regaridng Federal Student Aid Programs; he voted no on HR 2 the CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2009 that provides healthcare for kids who need it (and yes, healthcare does affect education), he voted no on HR 4137 for Higher Education Act amendments and extensions. In 2006, Campbell voted No on HR609, the College Access and Opportunity Act, and No on House Amendment 772, the “Reverse the Raid on Student Aid Amendment.”

So for John Campbell to tout an education bill, in light of his record, is clearly laughable to parents in CD-48 who care about education.

But if you want your Congressman to vote “yes’ on the importance of Christmas, he’s your guy.