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Education Secretary Defends Bush Policy in St. Louis

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U.S. Education Secretary Rod Paige visited Metro High School in St. Louis Wednesday. (UPI photo)

By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis – U.S. Education Secretary Rod Paige took some tough questions about the administration's education agenda during a visit to St. Louis Wednesday.

Paige defended the president's No Child Left Behind Act, legislation many educators criticize as an underfunded mandate that sets unattainable goals.

When asked what role the federal government may play in easing the problems faced by the St. Louis city schools, Paige said such issues should be handled at the local level.

"We don't want to get involved in the issues for each individual state," Paige said. "We simply say to them, 'we have some resources that we can provide you, you decide how to use those resources.'"

Paige added that its up to each state to set its own proficiency standards. He noted Missouri's are considered reasonably high.

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