The a policy created to close the achievement

The No Child Left Behind Act was originally proposed by George W. Bush and his administration on January 23, 2001. It is a policy created to close the achievement gap of low-performing students in comparison to high-performing students within the United States. Thus far, this policy has not fully accomplished its purpose.  In 2007, 28 percent of schools failed to make annual yearly progress in regards to closing the achievement gap between their school’s high and low performing students. By 2011, that number had risen to 38 percent (McNeil, April 28, 2011).                I agree with the moral incentive to enhance the academic achievement of low-performing students, but I disagree with the narrow focus of the No Child Left Behind Act. The No Child Left Behind Act focuses on improving the basic skills of students such as reading, writing, and mathematics. Furthermore, the act follows the teaching of these basic skills with a required standardized test on these skills to track the improvement of students. I believe that the standardized tests given to schools by the state are having a negative impact on the curriculums in the schools of the United States. The standardized testing system installed by the act places an unnecessary pressure on teachers in the U.S. to reach the high standards set by their state. This pressure causes teachers to create a curriculum that is meant to only improve the scores of their students on the standardized tests rather than focusing on development of other important skills that students need to be successful. Consequently, the act causes teachers to focus more on improving the performance of their low-performing students rather than challenging and improving the performance of high-performing students’ skills in which they need to be successful in the creative, global, innovative and information driven U.S. economy today. Specifically, these skills include skills such as creativity, complexity, curiosity, and collaboration. Without supporting the development of these types of skills, teachers are not preparing students to be meaningful contributors in present and future economy of the U.S. This is a major negative secondary effect of the NCLB.                One skill that is being hindered by the NCLB act that teaches are allocating less time to due to them spending more time on teaching basic skills is the skill of creativity. The skill of creativity is a major skill necessary to succeed in the competitive economy of the U.S. today. For instance, if you lack the ability to be creative, inventive, and resourceful, and look at problems from a fresh perspective, you’re not much use to many employers these days. The aspect of creativity that often is required to be successful is the ability to envision a different way of conducting affairs or thinking of adaptions to improve the characteristics of businesses and various other organizations. Students will not be able to improve their creative intelligence if their school’s curriculum strictly focuses on meeting the standards set by their state with things such as multiple choice testing and the strict memorization of formulas to be successful in mathematics. Instead, teachers should be assigning students to construct free responses, essays, or group projects, which assign students to give a deep analysis of a scholarly topic. These types of assignments serve better to improve the upper-level thinking abilities of students.


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