No Child Left Behind

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No Child Left Behind

The use of the scientific, research-based program Reading First will result in better reading skills for students. Reading First is the $900 million dollar reading initiative of President Bush's "No Child Left Behind". This important "new" way of teaching reading is based upon five components: phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, reading fluency, and reading comprehension. Using these methods of teaching and the amount of money available, no child will be left behind.

Why the focus on strengthening the reading skills of children? It has been proven that those students who can not read well are more likely to drop out of school and have lower-paying jobs. Reading is the “foundation for success in society” (Paige, 17). Those students that have a strong early beginning in reading have more successful school careers. Success in reading produces greater success in social studies, science, and math.

As a country we are failing our youth in reading. Approximately 40% of students in our nation cannot read at a basic skill level. The majority of students who cannot read on a functional level come from low-income homes. The percentage of fourth-graders from low-income homes is a staggering 70% (Paige, 17). Too often the parents of the children who need the most help do not ask for it, or know that options are available to them. With all the challenges that face lower-income families, they often do not seek out the help that their children may need. In one school system, a fund was set up for children to received additional tutoring outside of the classroom. It was left up to the parents to arrange for transportation to and from the tutoring sessions (Ghezzi, 1). The foundation...

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Manzo, K. and Robelen, E. (2002, May 1). States unclear on ESEA rules about reading. Education Week online. Retrieved February 14, 2003.

PALs and reading first. Virginia Department of Education. Retrieved March 23, 2003. pp. 1-11.

Thomas, D. and Bainbridge, W. (June 2002), No child left behind: Facts and fallacies. Phi Delta Kappan, 83(10), 781.

Toppo, G. (2003, January 28). Most states lag far behind ‘No child left behind’ law. USA Today online. Retrieved April 4, 2003.

U. S. Department of Education, Inside reading first—news and events. (April 26, 2002). Retrieved April 3, 2002.

U. S. Department of Education (2002, April). No child left behind: what to know and where to go. Parents’ guide to No child left behind. [Brochure]. Paige, R.
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