Thursday, April 12, 2012


The no child left behind act has done more harm than good. Debate topic arguments, for Speech and Debate Class by Charity Johns of the MVCS

Written by Olivia Sutter

April 12, 2012

Positive arguments:

Is a one size fits all type of program

No one size can help all children; this program is trying to make every child the same, basically clones of each other. This program is not effective, and by making children all perform on the same level you are playing God, this may sound harsh, but you are interfering with the natural law of winners and losers.

Interferes with IDEA

IDEA is a law helping and protecting challenged students that are handicapped. This act says that these students have rights to ‘free appropriate public education’ These students cannot physically graduate from high school in four years like the NCLB is saying they must. That is where the discrepancy is. The IDEA provides every child with individualized education according to his/her needs whereas NCLB is a ‘one size fits all’ approach and it provides for education for these students but not in a way that they can comprehend and understand.

Hasn’t been making very much difference

In a study conducted by the Pew research center in Washington D.C. they deducted that only 30% said that their child’s school was better, 17% said it was worse and 40% said it had no impact. Let me repeat that I case you didn’t hear, 40% said it had NO IMPACT!!!!! So the federal government is millions of dollars into this program, the individualized schools are straining to afford it, taxes are going up because of it and a just under half of the parents in America say that it has had no impact on their child.

Requires too much testing all the teacher is teaching is the test, that’s it.

The pew research center discovered that 64 % of college graduates say that the NCLB has too much testing and only 10% say it is too little with 21% saying it is the right amount and 5% say they don’t know. Whereas they found out that only 44% of people who have only had some college but are not graduates think that there is too much testing involved with 18% saying that there is not enough testing and 31% say it is the right amount with 7% that don’t know, now, let me take it down another level, 32% of high school graduates say that there is too much testing, 25% of them say that there is not enough and 32% say that it is the right amount with 11% saying that they don’t know.

We often refer to college graduates as the ‘smart ones’ in our society, well, since college graduates usually have more knowledge than the average high school graduate thy have realized that there is negative effects of testing and they recognize that there is too much involved in our classrooms today, thanks to the no child left behind act act.

There is so much testing going on that there is no time for the children to be taught anything besides the tests. They are being taught that you’re only a good kid if you pass the test. This places additional stress on the child to pass the ISATS or whatever testing is done, so that they can go bowling with the rest of the class afterwards.

Standards are being lowered to that every child is at the same level as the other children in his class and the brighter children are ignored as a result

By not allowing the brighter portion of children to succeed you are holding them back, and breeding out the desire to want to do something good, to do the hard stuff, to be able to really study what they want and to learn all that they can. Yet, you do this so that the slower children can succeed at the same rate of the rest of the class. This ultimately is lowering the standards everywhere, just so that 10% of our children can keep up with the rest of the class.

Negative Arguments:

Every child gets equal opportunities

No one child is ‘special’ and gets to have a higher education than others. All children are able to have the same teaching and effort go into them rather than teachers spending all of their time on the brighter students and all but forgetting about the slower children.

Children are able to go to different school if their school is failing.

If a school is not meeting the requirements that they are required to meet, shown through test scores, children are able to transfer to another school with free transportation offered through the original school. Children are also able to transfer if their school is deemed ‘unsafe’ however children cannot transfer without parental consent.

A child that is behind is not behind for long

If a child is behind and is not up to par, he is not there for long because the teacher is there to make sure everyone in the class is on the same level, therefore, she would spend some extra time with that student and he would soon be on the same level as the class.

Your school gets more benefits if you are succeeding

Because of NCLB the better your test scores are the more funding and/or benefits your schools receives. You are able to have more programs and teach a greater variety of things. You are able to have more freedom in teaching and are able to hire better teachers and keep them. Because of this you have a greater incentive to succeed and to do your best, students are trained that good things come out of doing your best.

Challenges for ELL (English language learners) students

NCLB allows ELL students the ability to catch up with the class because they are teaching at a level that all of the students can understand.

Schools can hire better teachers

Because of NCLB Schools are able to hire Better more qualified teachers if they are performing well, also, teachers naturally prefer to go to the better schools and so they will almost always be found in the succeeding schools, and those same teachers often are excited for a change and will often switch schools, they will be more than happy most likely to come to your school if it is succeeding.

What do you think? I have to debate this tomorrow, but I don't know which side so I have to prepare to argue either, I sure hope I'm positive! I don't have very good facts/statistics for my neg!

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