For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
January 8, 2003
Fact Sheet: President Bush Celebrates Anniversary of No Child Left Behind Act
President Bush joined school principals and superintendents, education leaders, and Members of Congress in celebrating the one-year anniversary of the signing of the No Child Left Behind Act.
In combination with the President's budget, the No Child Left Behind Act enables America's public schools to receive record levels of funding from the federal government, and creates unprecedented levels of accountability to ensure that those funds are producing real results to help every child in America receive a quality education.
To ensure that the reforms and resources of the No Child Left Behind Act are reaching America's classrooms, President Bush announced that:
A Year of Progress in Strengthening America's Public Schools
In the year since President Bush signed the No Child Left Behind Act into law, the Bush Administration has worked closely with state and local education leaders to ensure that these important changes reach the classroom. And the new law is beginning to show results.
Since the No Child Left Behind Act was signed into law by President Bush on January 8, 2002, the U.S. Department of Education has been working to implement this landmark Act to ensure that every child receives a high quality education.
Approval of State Accountability Plans
The centerpiece of the No Child Left Behind Act is the development of rigorous state accountability systems to ensure that every child meets the highest possible standards. With the release of final regulations in November 2002, every state has the information needed to meet the January 31, 2003 submission date for state accountability plans.
Five states have taken the lead in integrating the requirements of the Act into their current accountability systems and have received approval for their proposed accountability plans from the Department of Education. The states receiving approval are: Colorado, Indiana, Massachusetts, New York, and Ohio.
The differing plans of these states demonstrate the willingness of the Department of Education to allow flexibility and variety among states, within the limits of the law. The Department has also released guidance to give educators detailed information on the implementation of key programs, including: Teacher Quality, Supplemental Services, Public School Choice, Transferability, Reading First, 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Technology, and English Language Acquisition Programs.
Reading First and Early Reading First
Approximately $412 million in funding has been distributed to date to 20 states to implement President Bush's Reading First program this school year. Grants have been awarded to Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Washington.
States receiving Reading First grants make competitive subgrants to local school districts. Local school districts then use screening and diagnostic assessments to determine which students in grades K-3 are at risk of reading failure, and provide professional development for K-3 teachers in the essential components of reading instruction.
School districts will use Early Reading First grants to support scientifically-based strategies to improve pre-reading skills of children in early childhood development programs through a strong focus on developing verbal skills, phonological awareness, and letter knowledge.
President Bush will continue his commitment to reading programs by requesting an additional $75 million over last year's budget in his 2004 budget proposal, bringing the total funding to over $1.1 billion.
The federal government is providing far more money than ever before to help states and local school districts implement the No Child Left Behind Act, including more than $22 billion in this school year alone. From 2000 to 2002, funding for elementary and secondary education programs increased by 49%.
President Bush is continuing his commitment to carrying out these reforms by requesting an additional $1 billion for Title I in the 2004 budget, a total request of $12.35 billion for 2004.
Public School Choice and Supplemental Services
States have implemented the public school choice provisions of the Act to allow parents of students in low-performing schools to transfer to a better public school.
States have identified supplemental service providers to provide after-school instruction and tutoring to students enrolled in schools in need of improvement. States have provided real options this school year to parents with children in low-performing schools to ensure that these students receive the help they need.