For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
May 6, 2002
President Highlights Next Step of Education Reform
President Bush will highlight the next important step in education
reform -- translating legislative action into results in the classroom
-- by stressing the need for increased accountability, improved teacher
quality, more parental involvement and a focus on reading in our
nations public schools.
In Michigan and Wisconsin, President Bush joined Education
Secretary Rod Paige's 25-city No Child Left Behind Tour Across America.
As part of the tour, the President will meet with students, teachers,
principals, parents and community leaders to talk about the important
roles they play in improving our nations schools.
Background on the No Child Left Behind Tour Across America
President Bush signed the cornerstone of his education agenda -- the
No Child Left Behind Act -- into law on January 8, 2002. As a result of
the No Child Left Behind Act, states and school districts will develop
strong accountability systems to ensure that every child in America is
receiving a quality education.
States and school districts will receive
additional flexibility and reduced federal red tape through the ability
to transfer and consolidate funds to encourage innovation. To achieve
the goal of higher student performance, the new law requires a highly
qualified teacher in every classroom.
Additionally, parents will have
access to more information about how well their local school is
performing, and new options to have more control over their childrens
education. And, every school in America will have new tools to ensure
that children can learn to read.
The No Child Left Behind Act is the most sweeping reform of the
educational system in a generation, and it will result in significant
changes at the state, school district and classroom levels.
8, Education Secretary Rod Paige announced a 25-city nationwide tour to
increase public awareness of these new changes -- and to encourage
parents, teachers, principals and community leaders to take an active
role in implementing education reform.
As part of this public
awareness effort, the Department of Education has prepared specific
information available through a web site (www.NoChildLeftBehind.gov)
and guidebooks to help parents, teachers, principals, local and state
officials and community leaders.
President Bush will meet with parents, teachers, school
administrators and community leaders to encourage their involvement in
implementing school reform. The President will focus on:
Strengthening Accountability -- Under the No Child Left Behind Act,
states will be responsible for setting strong academic standards for
what every child should know and learn in reading, math, and science
at the elementary, middle and high school levels.
Beginning in the
2002-03 school year, schools will have to measure student progress and
better target resources by administering tests in each of three grade
spans -- grades 3-5, grades 6-9, and grades 10-12 in all schools.
Beginning in the 2005-06 school year, tests must be administered every
year in grades 3 through 8 in math and reading.
Beginning in the
2007-08 school year, science achievement must also be tested. The
Presidents FY 03 budget requests $387 million to help states develop
and implement accountability systems.
Improving Teacher Quality -- The No Child Left Behind Act requires that
there must be a highly qualified teacher in every classroom by the end
of the 2005-2006 school year. Using the new provisions in the No Child
Left Behind Act in conjunction with President Bushs budget request,
the federal government will invest more than $4 billion in 2002 alone
to improve teacher quality and strengthen teacher recruitment
Increasing Parental Involvement -- Because of the No Child Left Behind
Act, every parent in America will have access to information on how
well their childs school is performing. Parents can use this
information to get more involved to strengthen their childs school.
And, the No Child Left Behind Act gives low-income parents with
children in persistently failing schools the ability to transfer their
child to a better public school or use federal Title I dollars for
supplemental services to improve their childs education.
Strengthening Reading Programs - The No Child Left Behind Act fully
implements the Presidents Reading First initiative. The new Reading
First State Grant program will make 6-year grants to States, which
will make competitive subgrants to local communities.
recipients will administer 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.
The new Early Reading First
program will make competitive 6-year awards to districts to support
early language, literacy, and pre-reading development of preschool-age
children, particularly those from low-income families. The Presidents
FY 03 budget requests $1 billion for Reading First and $75 million for
Early Reading First.