What Do You Think?
The Brookings Institute Looks at No Child Left Behind Legislation and Accountability
"No Child Left Behind? The Politics and Practice of Accountability "suggests that NCLB should have a provision that holds students accountable.
The 2002 No Child Left Behind Act is the most important legislation in American education since the 1960s. The law requires states to put into place a set of standards together with a comprehensive testing plan designed to ensure these standards are met. Students at schools that fail to meet those standards may leave for other schools, and schools not progressing adequately become subject to reorganization. The significance of the law lies less with federal dollar contributions than with the direction it gives to federal, state, and local school spending. It helps codify the movement toward common standards and school accountability.
Yet NCLB will not transform American schools overnight. The first scholarly assessment of the new legislation, No Child Left Behind? breaks new ground in the ongoing debate over accountability. Contributors examine the law's origins, the political and social forces that gave it shape, the potential issues that will surface with its implementation, and finally, the law's likely consequences for American education.
Nonetheless, Peterson and West believe that with no provision for student accountability, a gaping hole remains in the federal law. Recent research shows that greater gains are possible if students are held accountable.
Paul E. Peterson is Henry Lee Shattuck professor of government and director of the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard University. He is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. Martin R. West is a research fellow at the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard University.
Making the "No Child Left Behind Act" Work for Children Who Struggle to Learn is a free publication available to the public via the web from the National Center for Learning Disabilities and Schwab Learning.
Whether it's a child who as a young learner is showing early signs of difficulty or a student receiving special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), it is likely that No Child Left Behind Act is already affecting millions of children's education in important ways.
This guide introduces parents to several key parts of NCLB that they can use as tools to improve educational services for their child. Today, parents face an educational landscape very different from that of only a few years ago. We hope this guide helps parents navigate the complexities of NCLB, to begin to understand its many new provisions and with this knowledge, equip parents to further their advocacy efforts on the behalf of their child.
Making the "No Child Left Behind Act" Work for Children Who Struggle to Learn