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The Effects of NCLB on Special Education. Kaitlin White Mark Sanders Megan Davenport Nicole Faulkner. Table of Contents. What is NCLB? Philosophical Approach Historical background IDEA Curriculum Testing and Funding Roles of a Special Educator Collaboration.

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Kaitlin white mark sanders megan davenport nicole faulkner

The Effects of NCLB

on Special Education

Kaitlin White

Mark Sanders

Megan Davenport

Nicole Faulkner

Table of contents

Table of Contents

  • What is NCLB?

  • Philosophical Approach

  • Historical background

  • IDEA

  • Curriculum

  • Testing and Funding

  • Roles of a Special Educator

  • Collaboration

What is no child left behind

What is No Child Left Behind?


All students with limited English proficiency will become proficient

Taught by highly qualified teachers

Meet AYP standards


Assessment through testing


  • The purpose of this law is to close the achievement gap with accountability and choice.

    • Accountability: The school system

      • Administration

      • Teachers

    • Choice: Parental Choice

      • Different schools that meet AYP

      • Special Education

Philosophical approach

Philosophical Approach

  • Constructivist

  • Developmentalist



  • PRO: Requirement to reach diverse learners may lead to more hands-on/applied instruction, less memorization.

  • CON: AYP req’t may lead to exact opposite- just know the facts and be able to repeat it on a test. Testing and progress req’t take focus away from the learning experience.



  • NCLB by it’s NAME should mean that each student is getting their individual needs met,

  • BUT- AYP and other requirements may not allow teacher’s time to do this.

  • Inclusion: SpEd students may be on different developmental levels than peers – good or bad?

  • IEP is a very developmentalist approach: education is student-centered and student-specific, built around one student and begins at their current level of learning and development.

Historical background

Historical Background

  • Learning Disabilities (LD) as a field of research in the early 1960s

  • Elementary and Secondary Education Act in 1965

  • Programs for LD students in the early 1970s

More historical background

More Historical Background

  • November1975 President Ford signed the Education for All Handicapped Children Act

  • IDEA Act in 1975 (original)

    • Revisions throughout the implementation

      • Last Revision 2004

Even more historical background

Even More Historical Background

  • Improving America’s Schools Act 1994

    • Addition to Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965

  • NCLB Act 2001

Individuals with disabilities education plan

Individuals with Disabilities Education Plan

  • Inclusion (Mainstreaming)

  • Education Community toleration

  • Closing the Gap between Special Needs students and General Curriculum Students



  • General Education Classes

    • Inclusion as soon as possible

  • Prepare the students for real world experiences

  • Severe Cognitive Abilities

  • IEPs (Accommodations and Modifications)



  • Accommodations

    • Equal Access to learning and equal opportunity to show what they know.

  • Areas to accommodate

    • Instruction

    • Organization

    • Grades

    • Homework

    • Testing

    • Environment

    • Communication



  • Modifications

    • Provide meaningful and productive learning experiences.

  • Areas to modify:

    • Instruction

    • Organization

    • Homework

    • Testing

    • Grades

    • Environment

    • Communication



  • AYP

    • 1% sit out

  • Alternative Assessments

  • High Stakes

Example questions

Example Questions

Role of the special educator

Role of the Special Educator

Before and After No Child Left Behind

Nclb and the speducator

NCLB and the Speducator

  • More Consulting / Less Teaching

  • Overall + effect

    • Results in more inclusion

    • Results in more collaboration

More of a consultant

More of a Consultant

  • GenEducatorsmay need SpEd strategies to raise test scores (Neel, 2006)

  • NCLB mandates that students learn from highly qualified (not SpEd)

More inclusion

More Inclusion

  • Same Access, Same Teacher, Same Test

    • So- Same Classroom?

      • (Handler, 2006; Paulsen, 2008)

Collaboration is a joy

Collaboration is a Joy!


Gen Educator

More collaboration

More Collaboration

  • NCLB calls for Shared Responsibility

    • For gen-ed content and common assessments

    • SpEd students are spending LESS time in SpEd classrooms (more time in gen ed).

Percentage of special-ed children who spend more than 60% of their day outside a regular classroom

More collaboration1

More Collaboration…

  • GenEducators need Speducators to meet strict NCLB standards

    • Help to work with struggling students (Handler, 2006)

    • Mutual Interdependency (Neel, 2006)



  • “You have some, I have some, we need each other for the whole” (Neel, 2006)

  • Helps meet the highly qualified standard

    • Both teachers are experts in their own area

  • Collaboration is necessary for success

Successful collaboration

Successful Collaboration

  • Sustained over time

  • Collaborating teachers working towards the same goals

  • Draw on each others expertise

  • Principal being an advocate and allowing time to plan collaboration

Interview response

Interview Response

Interview response 2

Interview Response 2

Position on the issue

Position on the issue

  • We are for the changes that have been implemented for the Special Education Curriculum goals and what the roles of the Special Educators have.

  • We are against the changes that have been implemented for the testing on the Special Education Students.

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