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California Can Hit Accountability Snooze Button

California has reason to cheer—and jeer—at the U.S. Department of Education this week. Tom Torlakson, the state superintendent, and Mike Kirst, the state board president, received a letter Tuesday with some good news for its education officials: California will be allowed to hit the pause button on its school rating system. But the state did not get its way when it comes to requests dealing with accountability and assessments for students in special education and English Language Learners, according to the letter, from Deborah Delisle, the assistant secretary of elementary and secondary education. In fact, if it doesn’t make some fixes in those areas, the Golden State could risk losing federal funds.