And now we're at 44: U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today announced the latest applicant to be approved for flexibility from many of the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act. And this time it's a place that's technically outside the country's borders: Puerto Rico.
Forty-two states and the District of Columbia already have waivers. For those of you keeping score at home, that means Illinois and Wyoming, plus the Bureau of Indian Education, are still waiting for a response from the U.S. Department of Education on their waiver requests. The Education Department also counts Iowa as a "waiting list" state, but the department rejected an earlier version of the Hawkeye State's waiver last year.
Also noteable: Like Alaska, Minnesota, Texas, and Virginia, Puerto Rico got approved for a waiver without adopting the Common Core standards in reading and math. (For the record, Minnesota has adopted just the language arts standards.)