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ERIC Number: ED505677
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jan-7
Pages: 18
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
How "No Child Left Behind" Threatens Florida's Successful Education Reforms. Backgrounder. No. 2226
Ladner, Matthew; Lips, Dan
Heritage Foundation
This paper reviews nationwide education reforms under No Child Left Behind and state reforms in Florida--comparing federal and state results. The paper examines the danger that federal regulations and incentives pose to testing and accountability systems in Florida and every other state. The limits of No Child Left Behind and the promise of Florida's success suggest that federal policies that give states greater authority to direct education reform hold promise for improving education when states and citizens commit to effective reforms. The paper states that as policymakers review No Child Left Behind, Congress and the Obama Administration should recognize three important lessons: (1) No Child Left Behind has failed to deliver meaningful improvement in student learning; (2) Florida's experience demonstrates the opportunity for state-directed education reform; and (3) NCLB's accountability regulations threaten to undermine state accountability reforms. Given these lessons, Members of Congress and state policymakers should re-evaluate federal and state governments' current approach to improving public education. At the federal level, Congress and the incoming Administration should limit federal policymaking authority and transfer greater power back to the state and local levels--and they should end perverse incentives for states to weaken state standards. State policymakers should learn from Florida's success and implement systemic education reform to hold schools and students accountable for results, expand parental choice, and improve school and teacher effectiveness. Appended to this document is: "Safe Harbor Schools in Florida," showing Florida School Districts Making Safe Harbor, by Year, Based Upon Overall Math and Reading Results Alone, 2003-2008. (Contains an executive summary and 27 notes.)
Heritage Foundation. 214 Massachusetts Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20002-4999. Tel: 202-546-4400; Fax: 202-546-8328; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Heritage Foundation
Identifiers - Location: Florida
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001