WASHINGTON — Ten national education groups on Wednesday urged Congress to move quickly to finalize revisions to No Child Left Behind, the nation’s main federal education law.

WASHINGTON — Ten national education groups on Wednesday urged Congress to move quickly to finalize revisions to No Child Left Behind, the nation’s main federal education law.


"Parents, students and educators have lived with No Child Left Behind for 14 years - more than a child’s entire K-12 experience. What better way to begin the new school year than with the passage of a new law," the groups — including teachers unions and associations representing principals, superintendents and parents — wrote in a letter to GOP and Democratic leaders.


The House and Senate have each approved their own versions of the rewrite and now must come together in a conference committee to hammer out a compromise that can pass both chambers and win President Barack Obama’s signature.


They have plenty of differences to overcome, including on the knotty issues of Title I spending and school accountability. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., chairman of the education committee who played a key role in crafting and shepherding the Senate’s bipartisan bill, has said he will work with Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., chairman of the House education committee, to create a schedule for the conference.


An aide to Alexander said the senator is expecting that the conference will be successful, but not necessarily quick — he hopes to be able to send a bill to the president sometime this year.