“We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in any society, a life free from violence and fear.” “We would like to create a world familiar with the smiles of children rather than their tears.” “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” — Nelson Mandela The Children’s Defense Fund “Leave No Child Behind’s” originated in 1973 and is a private, nonprofit organization that is funded, and supported by many different sources such as, donations by individuals, corporations, foundations, and corporate grants. The CDF’s goals and objectives is to make sure that all children, no matter what their race, religion, financial status, and so on, has the opportunity for a fair, healthy, safe, and moral head start in their lives. This will also allow each child to have a successful approach into adulthood by having the help of loving and caring families, organizations, and with the help from their communities as well.
The Children’s Defense Fund provides for all children of America a independent, strong, and effective voice for those children who are not able to speak, vote, or lobby for themselves. The CDF provides specific attention to our children and families who are not financial sound (poor), our children of minority groups, and our children with disabilities. This organization provides education throughout the nation on the needs of all children, and encourages different measures of prevention before our children get sick, find themselves in trouble, drop out of school, or end up with the breakdown of their families. The objectives of the “No Child Left Behind Act” consists of closing the gap between children and their achievements, especially when it comes to successful achievements academically. The federal government plays a huge and critical role in achieving all goals. The CDF endorses the accountability system that will helps guarantee that all children, which includes children from low-income households, children of a different race or ethnicity, children with disabilities, and those who lack proficiency in the English language, are given the tools, skills, education, and knowledge so that they will be able to be successful members of society.
While there are numerous positions that differ on the many different aspects of the law that is based on issues that have been raised throughout the development of the NCLB. There are constructive and significant corrections to be made in order for the Act to be effective and fair. “Among these concerns are: over-emphasizing standardized testing, narrowing curriculum and instruction to focus on test preparation rather than richer academic learning; over-identifying schools in need of improvement; using sanctions that do not help improve schools; inappropriately excluding low-scoring children in order to boost test results; and inadequate funding,” (Amanire, 2004).
All in all, it is important that the laws need to put more emphasis on taking action, and placing our localities and states accountable for the lack of high test scores, as well as making the necessary changes systematically, that will help increase the achievements of our students. The “No Child Left Behind” according to William J. Mathis (2003), “is the manifestation of a society that has lost its sense of community and purpose. Instead of passively complying with a law that further alienates individuals from their society, we must refocus our laws to include the societal and democratic purposes of education”(Mathis, W.J., 2003).
It is important that we remind everyone that one of the most important purposes of school and education is to help develop and mold our children into becoming a generation of citizens that practice respectful civic virtues, as well as become a generation who cares and supports the needs of one another, along with helping others when it comes to the health of our towns, communities, cities, states, our nation, and the world in general. This will require the realization that our hope for the future will depend on the unlimited abundance of skills, tools, knowledge, and intelligence lies within our children. It is our responsibility to educate and train our children so that they will be a generation of individuals who will grow, and develop into responsible individuals who will take better care of our world and make it a better place.
Amanire, (2004), Joint Organizational Statement on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act
New America Foundation, (2014), Federal Education Budget Project; No Child Left Behind Overview: http://febp.newamerica.net/background-analysis/no-child-left-behind-overview Short, Kathleen. 2013. “The Research Supplemental Poverty Measure: 2012” U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, Table 5a, http://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/p60-247.pdf. Calculations by the Children’s Defense Fund. William J. Mathis, “No Child Left Behind: Costs and Benefits,” Phi Delta Kappan 84:9, May 2003: 679–687