How Effective is the No Child Left Behind Act?

There have been many laws that have been effective throughout history. However, there are a few acts that were passed, which had negative effects on the community. The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) was passed with good intentions, but it required too many high-test scores from school systems. The Act provided adequate funding for school for those that would adhere to its guidelines, but those schools that did not faced several consequences. The NCLB affected students, teachers, and the community more than government officials had thought it originally would.

The No Child Left Behind Act required all students to meet the same high standards, regardless of their background (Collins). However, the act did not take into account, that not all students test the same. In many schools, there are students with disabilities who have to work twice as hard to achieve good grades on their tests (Collins). In the Thompson and Allen case in 2012; it suggested that students of color in grades K-12 have not experienced higher achievement because of liability through standardized tests, they have been used to hide educational inequalities (Conn). Through this case, it shows the NCLB is used to cover up the deficiencies in the education system. This leads to many students of color going to college and having to take remedial classes to catch them up to speed. According to studies, many schools with low test scores have more students who juggle staying in school with the demands of family, financial obligations, and other risk factors (Woods). These results show analysts, students who have more than just their school work to focus on have a harder time maintaining good grades in school. Children pay attention to everything they catch on to every little thing that is happening in their environment. It came to no surprise when studies show that students are aware of the inequalities that occur with the No Child Left Behind Act (Lewis). The children who go to the inner-city schools have to learn in an environment of worn out facilities, poor teaching, and very little access to challenging courses (Lewis). These students struggle to learn due to the lack of funding in their school. The No Child Left Behind Act emphasizes proficiency in reading and mathematics, and provides funding for those areas (Woods). This is good that students will receive funding for these key subjects if the test scores are adequate. However, students also need the other core subjects in order to have a full education. These students need to have knowledge in all subjects in order to be successful in life. The students who excel in courses at their school, and need more challenging courses, do not have access to the classes they need to help them reach their full potential.

The No Child Left Behind Act is very stressful not only on the students, but it is puts a lot of pressure on the teachers too. Many teachers feel like their salaries and jobs are at risk if their test scores are low (PsyExtra). The thought of losing your job can become extremely stressful on anyone, especially if a teacher has a family at home. The stress of losing their jobs has caused many teachers go to drastic measures to ensure their students pass standards tests of the NCLB. Some teachers have lowered their curriculum to improve test scores, while others have started to teach to the test (PsyExtra). These do not benefit the students; they only benefit the teachers to ensure job security for themselves. There have also been cheating scandals, where teachers have changed student’s incorrect answers to the correct answers in order to improve test scores (Woods). Teachers are supposed to lead by example; this causes students to believe it is okay for them to cheat on important tests. It also teaches students, if they do not know the answer, then their teacher will correct their answer, so they will pass the test; this is extremely harmful for the students because they will eventually not study for their tests at all. In many areas, the NCLB causes the most experienced and qualified teachers to leave low-performing schools and go to higher performing schools where they have more job security (PsyExtra). This of course causes principles to hire less qualified teachers in low performing schools (PsyExtra). When the more qualified and experienced teachers leave the low-performing schools for job security, they hurt the students. The students must learn from teachers who are just out of school, who are just learning the best ways to teach students. The foundation for highly qualified teachers relies on the qualities that make up the teacher (Lewis). Many teachers who have been teaching for a number of years, care deeply about their students and are willing to do anything to help them succeed. However, teachers who are just getting out of college may not care as much about their students, due to them being so new at their career. Parents want teachers committed to helping students succeed and better skills at teaching diverse students (Lewis). Most parents are willing to do anything to help their child succeed in their educational career. For most parents, they believe they need an educator for their child who can communicate with all types of children. Also, one who is willing to go above and beyond to ensure their students succeed, and with so many experienced teachers leaving low-performing schools many parents have become concerned about these issues. This causes the students to suffer in their test scores, which causes the school to suffer.

The No Child Left Behind Act affects the community in many ways that one would not normally think about. Once the NCLB was passed, many schools became terrified of missing the act’s guidelines, which resulted in schools getting rid of students who could hold back the schools pass rate (Knefel). Of these students, they mainly consisted of students of color and students with disabilities (Knefel). It is unfair for students to be kicked out of a school simply because they do not test well. This was extremely harmful for student’s future, due to future employment opportunities and getting into the college of their dreams. The teachers and administrators should work with these students to ensure these students will pass their standards test, so their NCLB numbers do not go down. Many students are kicked out of their schools, they are likely to end up on the streets and are more likely to become arrested (Knefel). For many students, once they go into Juvenile Detention Center; it becomes the end of their education (Knefel). It is very hard for many students to maintain a steady job after going into a Juvenile Detention Center, due to their lack of confidence and respect of authority. Many employers will be cautious when hiring students with a criminal background due to the possibility of theft and other work place conflicts. Many students also find it very hard to go back to school once they go to a Juvenile Detention Center, because they find it awkward to be several years older than their classmates, especially when they are still in high school. The NCLB shuts out the parents with its reform (Lewis). This causes a lot of disciplinary problems with students in the schools because many school districts do not take parent involvement seriously (Lewis). Parents are just as important to a student’s success as a teacher is. If a parent is involved in a student’s school work, generally the student is successful and behaves well. However, if there is a lack of communication amongst the schools, then parents find it hard to be a part of their student’s educational lives.

The No Child Left Behind Act has had a great effect on the educational community. The tests prove the environment students come from; plays an important role in how well they test. The Act has caused many teachers to change how they teach in order to receive passing test results. It has also caused the community to experience high crime rates due to the number of students being forced out of school to meet the standards. The No Child Left Behind Act was passed with good intentions, but the politicians who passed the bill did not think about the educational body as a whole. They did not think about how students test differently, which causes the NCLB to have a negative effect on the community.

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Works Cited

 

Collins, Belva C., Sarah Hawkins, Cathy Galyon Keramidas, Elizabeth M. Mclaren, John W.     Schuster, Barbara N. Slevin, and Denise Lacy Spoelker. “The Effect of No Child Left Behind on Rural Students with Low Incidence Disabilities.” Rural Special Education Quarterly 24.1 (2005): 48-53. Academic Search Complete. Web. 27 Mar. 2017.

 

Conn, Daniel R. “Chapter 3: What Are We Doing to Kids Here?” Curriculum & Teaching Dialogue 18.1/2 (2016): 25-40. Academic Search Complete. Web. 27 Mar. 2017.

 

Knefel, Molly. “Incarceration vs. Education.” Nation 300.19 (2015): 20-25. Academic Search Complete. Web. 24 Mar. 2017.

 

Lewis, Anne C. “Washington News.” Education Digest 73.1 (2007): 69-72. Academic Search Complete. Web. 29 Mar. 2017.

 

“No Child Left Behind Supporting Public Charter Schools.” PsycEXTRA Dataset (n.d.): n. pag. Web.

Woods, Allison. “No Child Left Behind.” (n.d.): n. pag. Web.

 

 

 

 

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Judith Newman’s: To Siri, with Love

There are many ways to make connections with other adults in life, but one would not think a bond would happen through a cell phone app. In Judith Newman’s, “To Siri, with Love” attempts to persuade the reader that the use of Siri is a good thing. Newman provides insight to the life of her autistic child and how life changing the app is in his life. She shows us we should look at how things affect a group as a whole before judging a new product on the market.

Judith Newman’s purpose of writing this essay is to persuade the reader. She wanted to show her readers Siri can be used for more than just entertainment. Siri can be used to help autistic children communicate with other individuals in the world. She supported her argument with her statement, “But perhaps it also gave him a valuable lesson in etiquette. Gus almost invariably tells me, “You look beautiful,” right before I go out the door in the morning; I think it was first Siri who showed him that you can’t go wrong with that line (455).” Newman attempts to persuade the reader with her essay by showing the numerous ways Siri has helped relieve stress from her too. Autistic children wonder how the world works more than the average child which causes them to ask more questions, and when Newman runs out of answers she can refer her child to Siri for the answers. She shows us this when she states, “Gus had never noticed Siri before, but when he discovered there was someone who would not just find information on his various obsessions but actually semi-discuss these subjects tirelessly, he was hooked (452).”

The purpose of Judith Newman’s essay “To Siri, with Love” is many people benefit from the use of Apple’s Siri application. Newman demonstrates through multiple examples how children with autism gain experience with talking to others by talking to Siri, and they learn the proper etiquette when talking to her.

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Work Cited

Newman, Judith. “To Siri, with Love.” The Little Norton Reader (2014): 450-59. Print.

 

 

A College Student’s Worst Fear

Exam week is always the hardest week for college students. Many students stress about creating study guides, and finding enough time to study all the material. However, these are the stresses of normal college students. The students at Averett University during last year’s finals week had to think outside the box in order to ace their exams.

During fall finals, the Wi-Fi went out the night before final exams. This caused many students including myself, to have to find other ways of studying. Several of seniors took this as a sign of bad luck, and we were all going to fail our exams. However, I did not think so I used it as motivation to study twice as hard for my exam. If students found they needed to access the internet in order to study, then they took their laptops to nearby coffee shops to study. The IT department had the Wi-Fi up and running within the next couple of days.

At the time, the Wi-Fi outage seemed like the worst thing in the world. Finals week is already stressful enough, and then to not have Wi-Fi is even worse. However, when spring finals arrived we all learned to be grateful for the simple things we use every day.

When spring finals arrived, the first day of exams went very smoothly and nothing went wrong. It was Monday evening when chaos erupted. We had a bad storm in Danville that evening, so bad we had a tornado watch. I was in the dorms with my friends taking shelter from the possible tornado that could have been approaching the campus, when everything went quiet.

As soon as the campus lost power, you could hear the students on the floors above me and below me moaning in agony. Everyone started to come out of their rooms and try to figure out what had happened. For a small campus, it did not take long to figure out a tree had fallen on a power line and knocked out all the power four miles around Averett.  Many students waited until late in the night to start studying, and they went to Starbucks or Subway in Walmart to study. Even though there were rumors going around that morning exams may be canceled I did not want to take any chances, I decided to go ahead and study. I studied while hanging out in the hallway with my friends, and then once it got too dark to study in the hallway I decided to walk down to the Student Success Center to study by the flood lights. It was extremely packed in the Success Center; however, I was able to find a spot by a flood light for my friend and I.

We studied for a major part of the night in the Success Center, and were later joined by a couple more of my friends who came down from the dorms. They came down from the dorms because two of the football players was walking around the dorms in a clown mask and a Purge mask. They would walk around the dorms and would knock on some doors saying, “Hey do you want to play a game?” They got scared and decided to come down to where we were studying, but those football players decided to come down to the Success Center also. Once I saw how terrified my friends were, I texted my resident assistant and told her there were guys with clown masks in the success center, and she got security to come and take the masks away.

After studying for a while, we all decided to go back upstairs to the dorms, because it did not look like the power was coming back on that night. We all went back upstairs, and I charged my phone with my laptop, so I would have that if someone needed to reach me. My roommate charged her phone with a friend’s laptop and then we went to bed in an extremely quiet dorm.

The next morning, we woke up and my morning exam was canceled. I was very lucky that Averett is located in the city, so I could at least take a shower. The shower I took that morning was one of the coldest showers I have ever taken, due to the hot water tank not working. I knew the café would not have a very fulfilling breakfast that morning due to the power outage. Once my roommate awoke and got going, we both hopped in the car and we went to Hardees with our laptops, textbooks, and chargers, and ate breakfast.

Once we finished eating our breakfast, we started studying for our finals. My roommate had to use Wi-Fi to study for test. I preferred the old-fashioned method of flashcards, especially after our last finals week. Once my roommate started studying, she started to notice she was struggling with getting Wi-Fi signal. I asked her if she wanted to go to our favorite coffee shop so she could study easier and she said yes.

We packed up our stuff, and headed to our coffee shop, where we saw some of our professors. They informed us the power should be back on by 10 a.m. We were very hopeful, but since we had an hour until the power was supposed to be back on we sat down with our coffee. We studied for an hour and charged our devices, while observing the many people rushing to work and grabbing their morning coffee. My roommate struggled to concentrate, because of the loud expresso machines and the many conversations that were taking place. However, I found it very pleasing to have something to distract me from studying from time to time.

At 9:58 a.m. I received a text from one of my friends who was back on campus saying the power was back on. We waited a couple minutes, just in case the power came on too quickly and through a breaker and went off again, then we went back to campus. We took our final exams and passed with high grades. Then we started our summer after an adventurous week at college.

Once back on campus, all appreciated having our lights back on. Especially, since the power was out campus wide for 16 hours. The outage made all of the students think of new places to study and different ways to charge their electronics. The students who are normally afraid to say something on campus, had to speak up and help their friends. Other students were forced to think outside the box in order to accomplish what one would think would be a simple task.

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Joey Franklin’s: Working at Wendy’s

 

When authors write essays, they generally have a deeper meaning to the content of what is written on the paper. For Joey Franklin’s “Working at Wendy’s” essay, he provides us great insight into what it is like work at a fast food restaurant. Not to do the physical work, but to get to know the employees there on an individual basis. Franklin shows us to never judge someone by their outside looks, because you never know what they have going on at home.

Joey Franklin’s purpose for writing this essay, was to show the typical stereotypes that work in fast food restaurants. He showed us a high school student who to the average person looks like he is just working there part time. However, little does the customers know he has been forced to find his own place to live by his dad and is currently homeless until he enlists in the military. Franklin uses several other examples of stereotypes in his essay to show us what we typically think of as fast food worker is generally false. Joey Franklin manages to write in a narrative and descriptive tone, while telling us there is more than the eye can see when it comes to fast food employees. His writes in such a narrative tone that it almost seems like we are reading a journal of his, that is describing a time he worked at Wendy’s while in college.

Joey Franklin’s essay “Working at Wendy’s” diminishes the typical stereotypes of fast food employees by providing insight into the everyday lives of its employees. Franklin manages to do all of this while maintaining a descriptive and narrative tone throughout his text, which makes the reader feel as if they are really in the restaurant as the story is taking place. He causes the reader to think twice before judging a person by their looks, because one never knows what is going on in a person’s life at home.

 

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Work Cited

Franklin, Joey. “Working at Wendy’s.” The Little Norton Reader (2006): 401-10. Print.

Sherman Alexie’s: Superman and Me

Sherman Alexie does an excellent job of describing how Indians are expected to fail in society in his essay Superman and Me. Alexie not only explains how they are expected to fail, but he goes further to explain how their failure is accepted in society. He does an excellent job of showing us we will be expected to fail in life based on certain situations, but we must refuse to fail and always pursue our goals.

Alexie chose to write in informal language to help give the reader a clear image of what life is like growing up on a reservation. He goes through his life story and tells us about his childhood. Where his father had many books in his home, and this inspired him to do the best he could in his lifetime. Alexie writing in this format, makes the reader know how hard it is to become an above average Indian when growing up. He proves to us that it is easy to become the average person in society, but to go above and beyond average you must refuse to give up even when times get hard. Alexie uses a lot of evidence to support his argument throughout his essay. He talks about how he was above average and successful, and how it was abnormal on his reservation because many expected Indian children to fail in society. Alexie does an impeccable job at convincing the reader of his point. He uses his personal experiences of him going into classrooms on Indian reservations, and tells the reader of how excited the children are to see him. He explains he is trying to save their lives, and when he sees those who are in the back who have already lost hope, he tells them books are their answer. He shows us to give back to our community, and to those less fortunate when we become successful.

Sherman Alexie does a great job at explaining to the reader how children on Indian reservations are not taught the motivation in life to succeed. He explains the key to his success was reading, and he knew he was smarter than the average person so he pushed himself. Alexie teaches us a very valuable lesson in life to always give back, and to remember where we came from.

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