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Politics in our Schools

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No Child Left Behind A summary and critique of the President's Education Plan by Timothy Rosenberg No Child Left Behind By Timothy Rosenberg Today's students face great difficulty in achieving an education. Under-funded schools cannot afford to educate our youth adequately, nor can they afford to maintain a safe environment contusive to learning. Students are forced to use out date texts and are subjected to long periods of standardized testing. A business model has replaced our system of education. The C.E.O. (the Federal Government) lists the job at hand, and then dictates exactly how it is to be completed. The employees (the public schools) are standardized and marginalized into the category of passing or failing. If a school is passing, it is rewarded and if it is failing, it is terminated. In 2001, President George W. Bush proposed a bill to the 107th Congress. After minimal debate, Public Law 110 was passed, more commonly know as "The No Child Left Behind Act." The law proposed sweeping changes in the education in the public schools. In fact, only five years after a Republican candidate campaigned to remove the federal government's role in education, the current administration has made it his "number one domestic priority" and expanded the federal role in education to gigantic proportions. The law, as I will explain in greater detail, mandates the specifications for the certification of teachers, requires students to be tested annually, allocates funding and reforms Title I, and specifies consequences if the goals are not met. The President delivered the proposal to Congress in a speech in which he coined the phrase "No Child Left Behind." No Child Left Behind Act of 2001: A Summary I. Assessment/Testing President Bush proposed in his bill a plan to raise standards and hold schools accountable. To meet his goal, the president decided to redefine how funding from Title I will be spent. ...read more.


(Bush 27) Increases Accountability for Improved Student Achievement * States will submit a plan to the Secretary of Education for all ESEA funds. The plan must include: * The adoption of standards, annual assessments of all children in grades 3 and 8 in math and reading, reporting, and consequences for academic achievement in schools. Federal funds will be available to help play for the assessments and state accountability systems. * The development of a system of sanctions and rewards to hold schools accountable for meeting performance objectives * A requirement for schools to publish, in print, school report cards for parents as well as on the Internet. The report cards must include math and reading results separated by ethnicity, gender, poverty, disabled students and English proficiency. When possible these school report cards should be integrated with existing state and local report cards. * An agreement to participate in an annual National Assessment of Educational Progress in grades 4 and 8 in reading and math. Congress would fund administration of the test. (Bush 27) * The Secretary of Education was to reduce the amount of money a state receives if a state fails to meet its performance objectives. Sanctions are based on whether a state meets its performance objectives for improving the achievement of disadvantaged students and English language proficiency. (Bush 27) Rewards for High-Performing States and Schools * An "Achievement in Education" fund was to reward high-performing States in closing achievement gaps and improving English proficiency. The performance is using state assessment results, which are confirmed by the National Assessment of Educational Progress. (Bush 27 - 28) * States have the option to implement the annual reading and math assessments in grades 3-8 before the end of the second year of the plan's enactment will be eligible to receive a one-time bonus. (Bush 28) * The Blue Ribbon Schools program was into the "No Child Left Behind" bonus fund to reward schools that make significant progress in closing the achievement gap. ...read more.


a. 0 b. 25 c. 33 d. 9,936,000 4. There are seventy-two million children in the United states. If George leaves 1,643,857 children behind by cutting Title One programs, and leaves 138,000 children behind by freezing spending for homeless education programs, and leaves 9,936,000 by slashing teacher training, what percentage of America's children as George left behind? a. 0% b. 1.63% c. 16.3% d. 163% Section Two - Verbal Skills 1. Teddy agreed to throw his support behind the No Child Left Behind Act because George had promised to fully _____ it. When George presented his budget, Teddy felt _____. Which Pair of words best fills in the blanks? a. undermine; excited b. comprehend; appreciative c. transcribe; Betsy d. fund; betrayed 2. George W. Bush said, "Education is my top priority," he was being... a. mendacious b. rebarbative c. risible d. all of the above 3. Sometimes in life, it is okay to tell a little _____, but you should always avoid _____. Which Pair of words best fills in the blanks? a. white lie to the American people; getting caught b. story that tugs at the heartstrings; being mawkish c. joke to lighten the mood; running with scissors d. kid that you're going to fund his education; following through 4. Correct the punctuation in the following sentence: "George W. Bush is the President who, in God's name, will protect our children." a. The sentence is correct b. George W. Bush is the President who I God's name will protect our children. c. George W. Bush is the President. Who, in God's name, will protect our children? d. George W. Bush is the President. Who, in God's name, will protect our children?! Although humorous, Mr. Franken makes a good point. I will close with a quotation of President Bush which Mr. Karp included in his essay, "Rarely is the question asked: is our children learning?" Like the president's grammar, the question is correct, but the answers are all wrong. ...read more.

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