Education Policy: Research: Historical Overview: Bush, G.W.

Federal Education Policy and the States, 1945-2009

The George W. Bush Years: NCLB - Sanctions

NCLB outlines the following sanctions for schools that do not meet their state-defined adequate yearly progress (AYP):

  • A Title I school that has not achieved AYP for two consecutive school years will be identified by the district (before the beginning of the next school year) as needing improvement. School officials will develop a two-year plan to turn around the school. The local education agency will ensure that the school receives needed technical assistance as it develops and implements its improvement plan. Students have the option of transferring to another public school in the district-which may include a public charter school-that has not been identified as needing improvement.
  • If the school does not make AYP for a third consecutive year, it remains in school-improvement status, and the district must continue to offer public-school choice to all students. In addition, students from low-income families are eligible to receive Title I -funded supplemental services, such as tutoring or remedial classes, from a state-approved provider, either public or private.
  • If the school fails to make adequate progress for a fourth year, the district must implement certain corrective actions to improve the school, such as replacing certain staff or implementing a new curriculum, while continuing to offer public-school choice and supplemental educational services for low-income students.
  • If the school fails for a fifth year, the district must initiate plans for restructuring the school. This may include reopening the school as a charter school, replacing all or most of the school staff, or turning over school operations either to the state or to a private company with a demonstrated record of effectiveness.


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