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Pros And Cons Of The No Child Left Behind Act

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The No Child Left Behind Act passed in 2001 by the George W. Bush administration is an act that aimed to close the achievement gap in public schools in order to ensure no child is “left behind”. Many people who know about this act criticize its effectiveness and its methods of achieving this unreachable goal. Not everyone is aware of the details and strict requirements that were set once this program was started, so I will explore the pros, the cons, and the outcomes of this program. The No Child Left Behind Act was created to ensure that 100% of students in public school systems reach the same state standards in reading, writing, and mathematics. This act was meant to increase the quality of education by providing negative incentives for…show more content…
One major way this program failed was the use of standardized testing. The tests given in these schools were given to all students, including disabled, special education students, and students with IEPs. It is not effective to assess results of standardized testing among an entire population of students, many of whom do not learn or take tests in the same ways. Another way this program failed was the fact that each state created their own tests. With this privilege, every state is able to lower the standards of the tests, making them easier for students to complete successfully and portray results of improvement. This is an obvious flaw because any statistics taken from the results of these tests can be unreliable and not representative of the students’ actual academic abilities. It was found that, in some states, No Child Left Behind testing led to a higher number of students with disabilities dropping out of school due to the inability to perform at what the school considered “normal” academically. Another flaw in the program would be “teaching to the test”. Since AYP is solely based on the results of standardized testing, it encourages teachers to only teach a handful of basic skills rather than creating a detailed and in-depth understanding of the curriculum. For example, if basic math questions are asked on a standardized test, the student will only be taught basic math skills. There is a high chance that those students would not be able to complete a word problem involving math because they were not taught how to recall mathematic strategies and how to implement them to solve a problem. One last issue that resulted from this program was the fact that, as they were the core for No Child
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