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The Good the Bad and the Ugly - the No Child Left Behind Act

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The good the bad and the ugly, "The No child left behind act"

Throughout history education has undergone several phases of development. In the past education has had a very limited federal contribution in scope and nature. It was not until 2002 when the Bush administration broadened significantly the federal government's role in education in this country by taking the lead in securing the enactment of the No Child Left behind Act (NCBL). The NCLB Act was designated to improve education and achievement in schools it aims to improve school performance, especially that of poorly performing elementary schools, by establishing a rigorous system of testing and evaluation of students and schools. Most important this act was intended to hold teachers accountable and responsible for the education of our children, the future of our society.

This NCBL act was without a doubt a superb policy, however; it has put tremendous strain on teacher's requirements and their careers. In this era of education reform, teachers are faced with a mixture of challenges that they must cope with in order to meet federal, state and local policies (Valli, 2007). Teachers are overwhelmed and have more demanding requirements that make it especially strenuous to achieve a common goal; they have to learn how to implement successful practices that can motivate students to learn and retain the material required in order for passing the final examination, in some states such as Texas this exam is known as the TAKS test. Passing the "test" has been the focus of all the teachers, because of this their workload has increased and intensified. Teachers have to become adaptive experts who can adjust and respond to high-stakes external demands so that students can be ready to perform in elementary, high school and in a higher educational institution (Valli, 2007).

The NCBL Act is not effective because of the current situation of state governments calling certain schools "failures" due to low test scores, which results in reducing funding to the school and causes schools to be under sate review. This affects teacher's careers and students who will be less motivated to work and continue with their education. Another issue is the ineffective curriculum; researchers reported that these policies led to students experiencing a narrowed curriculum that emphasizes the mastery of basic skills to prepare them for multiple-choice standardized tests while others found that high-stakes education policies created classroom environments where students were excluded from or ignored during classroom instruction (Valli, 2007).

The NCLB act has limitations, however, it is an admirable act for the education system because it ensures that every child has an opportunity to excel and receive a good education, it demands for responsibility and accountability from the public schools and their staff members.



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