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The Daily Reveille

Opinion

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LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Quia is a flexible learning tool Dear Editor: As the founder and CEO of the company that makes Quia, I was taken aback when I read the Sept. 8 article, “Senate looks to terminate use of online homework tools.” Quia was described as a product that “does not give credit for attempted work,” is “cutthroat and stresses out the whole class,” and that marks answers wrong for “something as small as a missing comma.” This doesn’t sound like Quia to me. When default settings are used, the Quia system allows unlimited attempts at answering questions, gives credit for students’ best scores and ignores punctuation in almost

Monday, September 26, 2011

WEB COMMENTS

all cases (except in exercises that are specifically about punctuation differences between English and the language being studied). It’s an encouraging and forgiving environment that allows every student to learn at his or her own pace. That said, it’s also flexible, and instructors do have the ability to adjust almost any aspect of the product in order to make Quia more challenging. We are happy to work with students and faculty to ensure an optimal learning and teaching experience. Our support team (available at bookhelp@quia.com or 1-877-2824400) is eager to offer any assistance necessary. Paul Mishkin CEO IXL Learning Contact The Daily Reveille’s opinion staff at opinion@lsureveille.com

As usual, our website, lsureveille. com, has been absolutely buzzing with reader comments. Check it out today, and let your voice be heard.

“Hauling tail to BR to hear the man speak. This country needs a hero and I believe it is Ron Paul.” -Anonymous

In reference the Reveille article, “Ron Paul to speak in Union Theater today,” readers had this to say:

“Ron Paul is my choice for President. He stands up for his values. I wish more candidates were like this man.” -Anonymous

“all my mommas bad dreams lately have been about ronpaul.i am nervous yet interested in what momma will say if she could see him” -martiquia “We would all be alot better off if we’d started listening to Taft in the ‘10’s, Goldwater in the 60’s, and Paul in the 70’s.. but hey It’s better late than never. Vote For him in the Primary.” -rufrignkidnme

“Ron Paul is the only one that tells the truth, who wants to hear that at a debate?” -Anonymous “I can’t wait to hear Dr. Paul speak tomorrow. I’ve forgotten what the man sounds like after watching all of these debates.” -Anonymous In reference the Zach Davis’ column, “Pope may soon face

justice in crimes against humanity,” readers had this to say: “I can’t help but think the author might have some alterior motive when I see his home is Poland and the Pope once belonged to Hitler youth.” -Anonymous “What I find disturbing is the fact that the vocal majority of Catholics seem to think the homosexuality part of this scandal is a bigger deal than the child molestation part. We have yet another clear case of the sane members of a group needing to speak up!” -Michael

Contact The Daily Reveille’s opinion staff at opinion@lsureveille.com

FAILURE OF DIPLOMACY

No Child Left Behind needs to be left behind by Obama

Officially signed into law in January 2001, No Child Left Behind came into being with support from both sides of the political aisle. Meant to help reform the state of American education by using standardized tests to more accurately measure student progress, it unfortunately became a bigger hassle for educators and students alike. In a recent article about the importance of the Department of

Education, I mentioned how, besides a few policies, the department is beneficial for American students. No Child Left Behind would be one of the policies that should be axed. Thankfully, it seems we might be heading down such a path if President Obama’s recent ideas concerning No Child Left Behind are any indication. Obama’s administration outlined last Friday how states would

be able to get relief from some of the aspects of No Child Left Behind, should they apply for it and agree to follow Obama’s educational reform ideas. One of the biggest parts of No Child Left Behind which the President and his administration are offering to waive for states is the upcoming 2014 deadline concerning proficiency levels. According to the act, 100 percent of students are meant to be testing on their grade

BEST AND WITTIEST

cartoon courtesy of KING FEATURES SYNDICATE

The Daily Reveille Editorial Board

Matthew Jacobs Chris Branch Ryan Buxton Marissa Barrow Sydni Dunn Devin Graham

Editor-in-Chief Associate Managing Editor Associate Managing Editor Managing Editor, External Media News Editor Opinion Editor

level in reading and math in just more than a year. Even if such a goal was possible – and really, the idea of every single student in the country passing is extremely optimistic and naïve – it certainly isn’t going to happen in accordance with No Child Left Behind’s deadline. Last month Secretary of Education Arne Duncan stated 82 percent of schools are failing to meet their Adequate Yearly Progress, or AYP, an essential part in No Child Left Behind which helps guide schools to eventually reaching the 2014 deadlines. While the numbers may not have been as high as Duncan stated nationwide – an exaggeration undoubtedly meant to help illustrate Zachary Davis how unrealistic Columnist the law is – there is evidence which shows some states are just as bad as Duncan says. Editorial Projects in Education, a source for educational news since the late 1950s, compiled the failure rate of some states to reach their AYP. States like Florida, Missouri and New Mexico are all above an 80 percent failure rate, at 89, 81.9 and 87 percent, respectively. Clearly, the 2014 deadlines are not going to be met. Yet all this debate fails to deal

Editorial Policies & Procedures

The Daily Reveille (USPS 145-800) is written, edited and produced solely by students of Louisiana State University. The Daily Reveille is an independent entity within the Manship School of Mass Communication. Signed opinions are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the editor, paper or University. Letters submitted for publication should be sent via e-mail to opinion@lsureveille.com or delivered to B-26 Hodges Hall. They must be 400 words or less. Letters must have a contact phone number so the opinion editor can verify the author. The phone number won’t be printed. The Daily Reveille reserves the right to edit letters and guest columns for space consideration without changing the original intent. The Daily Reveille also reserves the right to reject any letter without notification of the author. Writers must include their full names and phone numbers. The Daily Reveille’s editor-in-chief, hired every semester by the Louisiana State University Media Board, has final authority on all editorial decisions.

with the fundamental flaw of No Child Left Behind — standardized testing. I’ve stated this several times, but the situations illustrated during standardized testing simply aren’t replicated in other scenarios. It doesn’t test one’s knowledge so much as it does their ability to take a test. It will take some time to see how large the effects of No Child Left Behind are when it comes to teaching. During the past decade, teachers have moved more towards “teaching for the test,” ignoring parts of the curriculum that won’t be part of the standardized exams. While that may be a horrible practice, it simply has to be done sometimes, mainly due to how much a teacher’s employment and pay are dependent on it. Ultimately, while No Child Left Behind may have been crafted with the best of intentions, it has been counterproductive in the end. Hopefully President Obama’s recent changes to the law are signs of its impending demise. It’s one thing we can certainly leave behind. Zachary Davis is a 20-yearold history junior from Warsaw, Poland. Follow him on Twitter @TDR_zdavis.

Contact Zachary Davis at zdavis@lsureveille.com

Quote of the Day “It is easier to believe than to doubt.”

Gene Fowler American journalist March 8, 1890 - July 2, 1960

The Daily Reveille - Sept. 26, 2011  

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