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position essay FINAL

position essay FINAL - 1 Murungi Kendi Murungi Laura Faulk...

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1 Murungi Kendi Murungi Laura Faulk English 2000 2 December 2011 No Child Left Behind Position Paper President George W. Bush left many signs of his presidency during his eight years in office, but none might be more impactful on our country than his “No Child Left Behind” Act. The act, which made sweeping changes to the public school system, has left the system with a plethora of problems. In short, the act is not living up to its standards thanks to individual states lagging on meeting goals, its minimal long-term effects and the act’s effect on teacher strategies. Overall, it’s a detrimental facet of our education system. In his study “Are States on Target to Make Their Goals?” James Gerard Caillier examines states’ performances in regard to the goals set by No Child Left Behind. The act’s biggest goal it set out to achieve was to have every student proficient in math and reading by 2014. Caillier found that while some states have shown improvement and are on pace to better their 2006 grade, only two states — Nevada and Wyoming — in the country are on target to make the 2014 goal in each grade as well as in mathematics and reading. Caillier argues that “if this trend continues, every public school student will not be proficient in mathematics and reading by 2014” (Caillier 593). This point in itself might be the most troubling.
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2 Caillier continues, delving to the point that “the goal of having each child proficient may be attainable” (Caillier 593). It’s a wise conclusion — while most pine for perfection, it is rarely achieved. On such a large scale (every public school student in the country), the goal of having every child proficient seems unreasonable. Additionally, as with many things in this country, the issue of money rears its profitable head. Caillier claims many states have complained about a lack of funding, thus decreasing their chances of truly making every child proficient in math, reading, etc. Caillier concludes that the combination of these factors makes a case for studying No Child Left Behind more intensely in order to pinpoint its flaws further. Furthermore, in their study “What No Child Left Behind
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