Connecticut requests leniency
Is this a trend? Not yet, but I would expect that many other states will request exemptions in the weeks and months to come. Connecticut argued that it's testing system already includes tests for fourth, sixth, and eighth grades; rather than spending federal money to expand testing to third, fifth, and seventh grades next year, that money should be spent on improving the current testing system.
It's an extremely reasonable request and one that I think the Department of Education will deny anyway. Like the protest filed from Virginia, this is another one to watch closely; the implications of the Ed. Dept.'s decision will be significant. If they accept it will certainly set off an avalance of similar requests; if they deny it, they risk further enraging the people who must implement the law.
I've come across another great resource for keeping up with No Child Left Behind issues. It's a website called nclbgrassroots.org and it's oriented towards resistance. Funded by the Civil Society Institute, NLCBgrassroots.org monitors press coverage of NCLB and breaks them down by state and by provisions of the law. It's a very useful site.