CEOs see the need for standards

National standards and tests are no longer desired by just a select group of policy wonks-some of the country's most powerful business leaders are on board, too. State Farm Insurance CEO Edward Rust, for example, can't understand why there isn't one set of expectations for American students. "The laws of physics apply equally here in Illinois as in New York," he said to Bloomberg reporter Paul Basken. Intel chairman Craig Barrett agrees: "Ultimately, the competitiveness of your kids ought to prompt people into action." It's no longer a secret that states are dumbing down their tests to shield their schools from NCLB's sanctions. "These issues must become more of a priority," said Texas Instruments CEO Richard Templeton. We spot the signs of a growing consensus.

"Intel, State Farm Heads Say Easy Tests Sap U.S. Education," by Paul Basken, Bloomberg News, March 23, 2006