9/26: No Child no more?

Moderated by Maureen Downey

Today, we explore proposed GOP changes to No Child Left Behind, changes that dramatically relax federal reins on our schools. The efforts to undo the law have inspired debate, as can be seen in  my column. And in a guest column, an economics professor contends that college remains a terrific investment for most people.

Read what we have to say and then comment below.

10 comments Add your comment

cobb mom of 4

September 26th, 2011
5:02 pm

Although I am no fan of NCLB I think it is a copout to blame it for all of the educations ills of the last 12 years. While NCLB may have exacerbated some of the educational issues of today, most of the problems we have now predate NCLB.

NCLB did not:

• Cause the teachers/administrators to cheat…that is their own lack of moral compass.
• Cause teachers teach to the test
• Cause schools to limit the curriculum to what is tested
• Cause schools to remove critical thinking skils from the curriculum
• Cause districts to cut school days and classroom time
• Cause teachers to cede authority to students and forgo discipline
• Cause administrators to cede educational authority to the squeaky wheeled parents and not support competent teacher decisions regarding student performance
• Cause BOE’s & Superintendents to hire unnecessary staff at the expense of teachers and classroom assistance

The main problem with NCLB was the unrealistic 100% Pass or 100% Fail policy. Administrators and lawmakers should never have let that pass. Otherwise, NCLB, RTTT and the rest of the money driven alphabet soup programs should have been administered with the CHILDREN in mind and perhaps they would have succeeded.

If Bill Gates or President Bush offered me the per child RTTT/NCLB money for my 3 elementary/middle school children, yet told me that I could ONLY teach them their inadequate curriculum, then I would turn the money down in a New York minute. But if that money was a supplement and I could still give them a balanced curriculum, I would say SHOW ME THE MONEY.

In my view the school boards are not administering these programs appropriately or effectively and that is why we have lost a generation of students.


September 26th, 2011
3:53 pm

The entire law should be scrapped as should the Dept. of Education. The federal government has no constitutional authority to be involved in any way in education (and at least 100,000 other things they stick their nose into unconstitutionally). Typical that the republicans would try to save face after having passed this horrible piece of legislation. Yes, let’s just tweak it a bit and everything will be fine. REPEAL IT. PERIOD.


September 26th, 2011
3:50 pm

No child no more – English major???


September 26th, 2011
3:20 pm

I totally agree! There is no way the expectations will be meet. It has be a failure from the beginning. It has done nothing but cause teachers/administrators to cheat. A teacher can teach without all the restraints. By the way, How were they taught………………


September 26th, 2011
2:57 pm

@MP you have truly summed it up. It has been an absolute failure.


September 26th, 2011
2:55 pm

If NCLB is repealed, does that mean we no longer have to pay to educate special needs kids? I’m all for providing public education to help the masses, but it’s the specialized care that’s costing us the most money


September 26th, 2011
2:34 pm

They have my vote do away with it. I feel that the schools hold the students hands making it way to easy for them. I hate how schools enable are kids to pass without making them earn it.


September 26th, 2011
1:55 pm

The tainted “No Child Left Behind” program has degraded the High Scool Diploma to a meaningless piece of paper with little or no worth at all. What good is the Diploma when a job applicant cannot even fill out an application. The single-parent brood mares that infest our city has only the concern of wondering if Little Johnny Jock-Strap or her Betty Big Buns is going to make the footbal team or the cheerleading squad. God bless the children and their parents of those few that applied themselves and in turn recieved an education worthy of a true “High School Graduate.


September 26th, 2011
1:54 pm

I totally support getting rid of NCLB. The entire program has been a scam from the get-go. Instead of doing what it promised to, which was to help the students that were struggling the most, it dumbed down the curriculum even more so than it already had been, in order to keep everyone “on the same page”.

When I was in school, if a student struggled, the parents had two options:

1. Hire a private tutor
2. Hold the child back a grade level, repeatedly if necessary.

Since both options are “damaging” to the child, most parents would rather see the curriculum dumbed down so their precious child will be able to seem “normal”.

Also, NCLB has relied solely on standardized test results, not how many children are promoted from one grade level to the next. This has caused a rift in the educational system, as we have seen right here in Atlanta. In order to make sure they get the funding, and prove they are improving, school systems across the country will do *anything* to meet the requirements, be it have the teachers do the tests themselves, to changing answers, to removing the “problem” students from the equation, literally, by taking them on a “special” field trip to some place like Six Flags, Stone Mountain, or other similar attractions where one could easily spend an entire day.


September 26th, 2011
1:28 pm

‘No Child left Behind’ has been an utter failure and an excellent example of federal government intruding where they have no business. Ever since its inception, teachers have been forced to teach the students what is going to be on the test and not truly educate them. Ask any teacher worth a grain of salt out there and they will tell you the same thing.