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ERIC Number: ED501254
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Apr-16
Pages: 39
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 23
Scratching the Surface of "No Child Left Behind": How "No Child Left Behind" Unfairly Affects Schools with Significant Proportions of Disadvantaged Students
Schmidt, Tom
Online Submission
Since the passage of Lyndon Johnson's 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act, standards-based testing has become a government initiative and part of a massive educational reform throughout the country. By January 8 2002, President Bush signed "No Child Left Behind" into law as the latest iteration of Johnson's early educational reform. Under "NCLB" legislation, school districts in all states must implement a standards-based test accountability program that ensures the adequate yearly progress (AYP) of all schools in every district. The two fundamental aims of "NCLB" require that a) all states, school districts, and schools work towards closing the achievement gaps that exist primarily between high and low performing, minority and non-minority students; and b) holding states, school districts, and schools accountable by imposing penalties and government sanctions if AYP is not attained and the achievement gap persists. Currently in its fifth year, "NCLB" has generated much discussion, both positive and negative, as evidenced by the research literature. In this thesis I will analyze the impact of "NCLB"'s subgroup provision--requirement for the separation of disadvantaged student test scores in the accountability systems--contrasting its intended purpose of closing achievement gaps and holding schools accountable with what it has actually created in practice. First I will provide a brief history of the origins of the educational accountability movement that "NCLB" exemplifies. Second, I will address the chief educational problem of the "NCLB" policy. Instead of helping schools in greatest need--low-income schools with a high population of variously disadvantaged students classified as subgroup students--"NCLB" places these schools at a greater disadvantage for closing the achievement gaps and further diminishes the quality of education they offer. Lastly, I will discuss possible solutions to these problems and the larger issue of reforming "NCLB" based on the realities that have been presented since it implementation in 2002.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001