Civil Rights and NCLB

June 04, 2007 1 min read

The No Child Left Behind Act does little to ensure educational equity for English-language learners, James Crawford writes in this Education Week commentary.

Because their test scores are used to determine schools’ adequate yearly progress, he says, ELLs spend far too much class time on basic reading and mathematics, test preparation, and English-only instruction, while their more-advantaged peers are free to study a broad array of subjects and participate in academic activities such as field trips and the arts.

“In numerous ways, No Child Left Behind is increasing the achievement gap,” Mr. Crawford writes, “if academic achievement is understood as getting an all-round education and, with it, an equal chance to succeed in life.”

What do you think? Does the NCLB law stress equal test results at the expense of equal educational opportunity?

A version of this news article first appeared in the TalkBack blog.