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No Child Left Behind Leaves No Cash-In Opportunity Unturned

Uh-oh! Tough times ahead for profiteers of No Child Left Behind. With its penchant for formulaic learning and standardized testing, it's a boon to the prepping and testing industry. But if Obama has his way, he'll favor policies that educators say work, leaving only some children behind.

While supporters of No Child Left Behind argue it holds educators accountable, the amount of work required to prepare, test, and produce post-test reports has created a thriving industry. Who is profiting most? To find out,


Textbook publishers moonlighting for the government
NCLB requires states to turn in lengthy and involved reports, which are provided by three of the top five educational publishers, which all rose to dominance under Bush. The companies are affectionately known as "Bush stocks."

Test-preparation companies
Under NCLB law, public schools must set aside 20 percent of federal funding to pay for supplemental educational services. And with 1,800 educational companies in the country, that money can choose where it wants to be spent. It might like Ignite! Learning, an educational company headed by George Bush's brother, Neil Bush, which has carved a niche by creating products that complement NCLB.

Specifically Sandy Kress, former president of the Dallas School Board, who crafted NCLB in Texas when Bush was governor. The lawmaker turned lobbyist earned $4 million in lobbying contracts with educational companies.

Shocking? Or just another day in Washington?


Join The Conversation
sexylibrarian sexylibrarian 8 years
Very true Berlin!
Berlin Berlin 8 years
I hate the NCLB Act, it made it to were we are passing through kids onto the next level without really educating them, and now getting everyone into college and even making a Bachelor's Degree meaningless at this point! If kids are going to pass onto the next level, they should meet that educational requirement, not just learn how to pass a test.
356UIK 356UIK 8 years
Lets hope he can.
Shadowdamage Shadowdamage 8 years
NCLB was a detrimental, stupid approach to education. As yet another (former) teacher posting on this thread, I can honestly say that testing kids to death is not how you educate. The UK was the same way, testing to the point where all education became WAS PREPARING FOR TESTING. It limited teachers, it limited students, it limited imagination, creativity and the "real" process of learning. Academically its made things harder on teachers, and schools, and students - not better. Please note the distinction I make here, between harder and better. So has it even benefitted ANYONE...oh yeah..the testing and prepping companies. -.-
death-by-chocolat death-by-chocolat 8 years
Well, uh, I can say one good thing that came of NCLB is the research money funding to look at just how well the educational system works when it is rigorously scientifically tested. My research program in grad school was basically established because of the extra interest in finding truly proven educational methods, inspired by NCLB. So while I *totally* acknowledge the way the government is handling NCLB as clearly not beneficial, it has thankfully brought scientific attention to the academic deficits in our country.
azulsky azulsky 8 years
I have friends and family who are teachers & administrators and NCLB is the bane of their professional life not to mention all the other crap they have to put up with just to educate their kids.
Great-Sommelier Great-Sommelier 8 years
I am no fan of this program. I say....School Vouchers!! Make schools compete!
KathleenxCouture KathleenxCouture 8 years
I'm in college right now to become a teacher and believe me I am infuriated with NCLB. I had to deal with it the last two years of high school and soon (hopefully not for long) I will have to deal with it in my own classroom. I wrote a research paper in favor of flushing it last semester. I highly recommend that everyone who cares about their children's education do their research on NCLB and do all you can to cut it from our government!
sexylibrarian sexylibrarian 8 years
As a teacher who has had to deal with NCLB over the past four years I have to say that I HATE it! It is leaving more kids behind then anyone can imagine. All the school districts care about is the test scores. NCLB hurts low income and special education students.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
My youngest nephew went to high school completely under Bush's No Child Left behind program and my nephews education suffered as a result. All he did was prepare for and take standardized tests. Every month the state or federal government had some new standardized test for he and his classmates to take. I remember calling him after he'd been in 9th grade for a semester and asking what he had learned. He said "I learned that to it takes three weeks to study for a standardized test and one week for the school to administer it. I haven't learned anything new in regular classes. I'm only learning new challenging thing in Orchestra and band classes, this sucks." So I called my old high school which was my nephews high school too and asked how many standardized test these kids are having to take. And why is my nephew saying that he's not challenged at all with the current curriculum? My nephews counselor said that they were scheduled to take one test every 4 weeks for the entire year. What? A battery of standardized tests every month for the brief 9 months that they are in school? Ridiculous. She agreed and said that parents and other relatives were calling to complain like crazy but that the No Child Left Behind bill requires that these kids keep taking the same freaking tests over and over again and because the schools don't want to lose funding and are rewarded with more financial support if the scores were high that the school board had decided that the kids would take all the tests required by the law and that is turning out to leave no time for the students to have their education advanced or to learn and explore in things. It only took 3 years for the high school to stop these monthly standardize test (its a republican county, republican school district. They really wanted this system to work but finally admitted that the constant testing and teaching only to the limited information on the tests was hurting the kids overall education. Its a good thing that my nephew is very interested in science, math and music and has no issues with self-learning because that is the only way that this kid has learned physics and US history and civics. We bought him books on various subjects and pushed him to do experiments at home and try to learn new subjects on his own. So my sister, brother and I gave the kid tests based on the subjects that we were covering with him. The only thing my old high school taught him was to march in formation in Marching Band. Which is always a useful skill - marching while playing the mellophone.
MarinerMandy MarinerMandy 8 years
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
Its bush bashing day at CS! cmon everyone grab a torch!
bastylefilegirl bastylefilegirl 8 years
Now if Obama can manage not to bail out the big 3 auto makers and what they would use to bail out the big 3 and invest in education we would have the future automakers on there way!
True-Song True-Song 8 years
That picture is so cool!
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
From all I've heard, the only thing No Child Left Behind has accomplished is that a large number of children have been left behind. Time for a new approach, for sure.
piper23 piper23 8 years
Me too.
Roarman Roarman 8 years
I'll be glad to see this useless program go.
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