No Child Left Behind

The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, signed into law by President Bush on Jan. 8, 2002, is a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the central federal law in pre-collegiate education. The ESEA, first enacted in 1965 and last reauthorized in 1994, encompasses Title I, the federal government's flagship aid program for disadvantaged students.

As the newest incarnation of the ESEA, the No Child Left Behind Act has expanded the federal role in education and become a focal point of education policy. Coming at a time of wide public concern about the state of education, the legislation sets in place requirements that reach into virtually every public school in America. It takes particular aim at improving the educational lot of disadvantaged students.

At the core of the No Child Left Behind Act are a number of measures designed to drive broad gains in student achievement and to hold states and schools more accountable for student progress. They represent significant changes to the education landscape (U.S. Department of Education, 2001).