Refocusing Accountability

(note - a print formated pdf of this document can be downloaded via the attachment at the bottom of this page)

Briefing Paper Prepared for Members of
The Congress of The United States

Refocusing Accountability:
Using Local Performance Assessments to Enhance Teaching and Learning
for Higher Order Skills

What is the "No Child Left Behind" Law?

What is the "No Child Left Behind" Law?

The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) is a federal law that provides money for extra educational assistance for poor children in return for improvements in their academic progress. NCLB is the most recent version of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

States set educational proficiency level

Under the U. S. constitution, states have the primary responsibility for public education. However, if states want to receive federal NCLB funds, they must agree to the law's requirements to:

A FairTest Position Statement on NCLB

Why “No Child Left Behind”

Will Fail Our Children

A FairTest Position Statement on

“No Child Left Behind,” the name of the federal
Elementary and Secondary Education Act, describes a worthy goal
for our nation. Tragically, the legislation will exacerbate,
not solve, the real problems that cause many children to be left

Head Start Letter

February 28, 2003
Dear Representative:

Failing Our Children: Executive Summary

Failing Our Children:


· How "No Child Left Behind" Undermines Quality and Equity in Education


· An Accountability Model That Supports School Improvement


Letter from FairTest to all Presidential Candidates. October 2007

October 25, 2007

Dear Candidate for President:

As the only national organization with testing reform as its focus, FairTest has a more than 20-year history of working to improve assessment of America's students. We have addressed such issues as the proper role of college admissions exams in university admissions, state graduation and grade promotion tests, and the role of assessment in the No Child Left Behind law (NCLB).

Summary of Proposed Legislative Changes to ESEA/NCLB

March 2007

The current version of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), called "No Child Left Behind" (NCLB), needs fundamental change. The Forum on Educational Accountability (FEA) has submitted legislative language based on the Joint Organizational Statement on NCLB to the U.S. House and Senate Education Committees that would remake the law into an effective tool for school improvement.

Aspen Commission Proposals are "NCLB on Steroids;" Side-Effect Will Be More "Teaching to the Tests" (PDF)

Letter in Opposition to Testing Head Start Children

Dear Representative:
As recognized experts in the fields of early childhood development and assessment, we write to express our concerns about plans proposed by the Head Start Bureau to implement a National Reporting System for all 4- and 5-year-olds in Head Start in the Fall of 2003. We agree in principle with the need to conduct ongoing child assessments. However, we are troubled by both the timing and structure of this new proposed effort.
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