Dr. Monty Neill (617) 864-4810
or Bob Schaeffer (239) 395-6773
for immediate release, Tuesday, September 25, 2007
NAEP DATA CONTRADICT BUSH ADMINISTRATION EDUCATION CLAIMS;
“NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND” HAS NOT LED TO FASTER SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT
Bush Administration claims about the controversial “No Child Left Behind” (NCLB) law are undermined by data from its own Department of Education, according to an analysis of newly released National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) scores by the National Center for Fair & Open Testing (FairTest). “NAEP shows educational improvement across the nation slowed significantly since NCLB went into effect,” said FairTest co-Executive Director Monty Neill. “This happened despite the fact that curriculum narrowed in many schools to little more than test preparation in reading and math”
“Gains from 2000 to 2003, before NCLB went into effect, were significantly greater than they were from 2003 to 2007, when NCLB was the law,” Neill continued. “That deflates the administration’s claims that federal law is driving school improvement. For example, black students’ 4th grade math scores jumped from 203 to 216 in the three years before NCLB took effect, then edged up to 222 from 2003 to 2007.”
FairTest also cited today's National Assessment Governing Board news release on National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) score trends, which acknowledges:
- “[Mathematics] gains made since 2003 are . . . not as large as those realized during some earlier period.”
- “The average 8th-grade reading score . . . remains below the level of achievement shown in 2002.”
“The administration continues to cherry-pick test scores to defend its deeply flawed education policy,” said Neill. “There are much better ways to improve educational quality and equity. Congress should listen to the more than 140 national education, civil rights and religious organizations that have come together to call for an overall of this damaging federal law."
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The multi-organizational statement calling for an overhaul of “No Child Left Behind” and other assessment reform materials are available at http://www.fairtest.org
Monty Neill, Ed.D.
Cambridge, MA 02139
617-864-4810 fax 617-497-2224