The No Child Left Behind act of 2001

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The No Child Left Behind act of 2001

Control of the public education system has been left to the State for most of the country’s history, it was not until the 1950’s that the federal government played a role in categorical programs, but the national government refrained from involvement in academics until the 90’s. Three days after taking up his position in office, George Bush announced his plan for the No Child Left Behind act (NCLB) which was a consolidated reform of the 1962 Elementary and Secondary Education Act or ESEA (McGuinn, p. 1). ESEA focused on providing resources for the underprivileged students, whereas the NCLB act focuses on all students in public schools. On January 8, 2002, the No Child Left Behind act was enacted. The law enlarged federal education spending, required states to design and administer proficiency test to all students grades three and up, demanded that States put qualified teachers in every class room, and promised to hold all States accountable for the performance of their public schools (McGuinn, p. 1).

The act itself is what was felt to be a solution for the failure of properly educating America’s children. How the act is put in to action, and if it serves its purpose, has depended on the States requirements and statistics. Public education was slowly decreasing in quality, consequently, failing America’s children, and a solution was needed. According to author, and Chair of the K-12 Education Task Force, Chester Finn Jr. “No Child Left Behind arose from the premise that America's public schools weren't doing well enough and states ought not to be left to their own devices to improve them. So Uncle Sam created a new web of requirements, incentives, and sanctions aimed at boosting school perfo...

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...m birth through graduation and beyond” (Carter, 2010).

The No Child Left Behind act was created to better public schools and it did. Like most laws, though, an update is necessary to keep up with the times and serve its purpose of aiding the American people. Government programs have a reputation of failing because of the lack of funding, but when the people come together for something as important as education, failure is not an option. America’s future relies on the children of today, so education should remain a priority of this countries government. There will never be an all pleasing solution; the need to complain will exist no matter what is done, but this does not mean the government should step away. The law was a backbone created to support the States and aid in academic success, therefore the law does not need to be negated, just reformed and improved.
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