NCLB Stance on Teacher Certification for Special Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

NCLB stance on teacher certification for special education and its impact in New Jersey. And, what students right do you feel is most important to uphold?

NCLB is, in other words, the 'No Child Left behind Act' that was passed by the President of the United States of America George Bush in the year 2002. The Act is an educational policy that is primarily meant for attempts to improve the performance of the Primary and the Secondary schools of America by increasing the standards of answerability and accountability for the various states of America, as well as the school districts, and also the various schools. Parents too would be able to find benefits form this Act because it would allow them the flexibility to choose the particular school that their children must attend. (Definitions of NCLB on the Web)

With the passage of the NCLB Act, the entire responsibility of public education for all children has passed form the actual guardian of that right to universal access of education to establishing the proficiency of all the students involved into meeting certain previously established standards. This means, to day, that the federal government is now deciding on the type of public education, and also how that public education must be provided to the needy. Although coated in sugar, it has become a bitter pill indeed for the states, especially New Jersey, to follow. (Hot Issues before the Legislature and the State Board of Education)

In fact, there are people who opine that today, there is a definite increase in the monopoly control of the preparation and for the licensing of public school teachers than there ever was before, and the term 'highly qualified' is reaching new heights, especially because of the fact that all public schools must use only highly qualified teachers when they follow the stipulations under the NCLB Act of 2002. The new American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence or the ABCTE has become an extremely important player in this issue, and this board has attempted to make things easier for teachers because it is no longer required that teachers be very qualified, and in fact, states like Idaho and Pennsylvania have fully accepted the ABCTE's Passport to Teaching. Under the NCLB, in order for a teacher to enter, he must be highly qualified, and this means that a teacher must be in possession of a Bachelor's degree, a full certification or licensure as specified by each state and a demonstrated capability in the core subject that he teaches. (Holland, 2004)

However, when teachers are offered the option of 'certification without indoctrination' so that the more conventional means of acquiring a certificate are disposed of, there will be an increase in the number of ABCTE teachers in the near future. This means that the traditional method of certifying teachers is fast becoming outdated, and in states like New Jersey, individuals who wanted to become teachers but who did not actually attend ed-school are welcomed into several schools, and in fact, New Jersey has gone so far as to put those liberal arts graduates who have passed their courses at par with education majors when it came to the selection process for a teacher in a school. (Holland, 2004)

It can be stated that the NCLB Act has the potential of becoming a welcome impetus to not only create teacher recruitment strategies, but also to create the more important retention strategies. The 'highly qualified' teachers serve the more disadvantaged students first, and then move on to other schools. Some teachers do feel that the term 'highly qualified' did not directly mean that they were 'effective' teachers; in fact, there are some who do not understand even the most basic of child development behaviors, and have been heard to comment that their wards' mind was like a 'brick wall', and since the federal government does insist on highly qualified teachers regardless of whether they are efficient and effective as teachers or not, under the NCLB Act, it has indeed become a problem to pool such teachers who would be able to do justice to their jobs from the highly qualified pool. (NCLB Teaching Quality Mandate)

In New Jersey, while 94% of teachers have in fact met with all the requirements and guidelines for certification for special education under the NCLB Act, there are many who have not, and this has led to the latest development, that these teachers are asking for an extension of the deadline for being 'highly qualified', which means that all these teachers must, at the end of 2006, have a Bachelor's Degree, as well as a state issued teaching certificate. They must also appear for a state test, major in a specific subject, or earn the required number of points so that they may be able to prove their proficiency as teachers, and as New Jersey needs these etchers to be certified in special education, and not in every subject being taught, because by law they are expected to teach multiple subjects and not just one, it is not a very difficult proposition to become qualified for teaching under the stipulations of the NCLB Act in New Jersey. There are quite a few complaints, however, stating that students of special education do not usually have teachers of the same standard as normal education standards, and this means that these children, who, in fact need more guidance than most, would suffer even more. (Education Update)


In any school or college or any other educational institution, the student must enjoy certain rights and privileges, consistent under the provisions of the law of the land. However, in general, the ideals of freedom and personal responsibility are inextricably bound together, and it is indeed difficult to separate the two, and in any campus, all the students are expected to respect, as well as protect not only own right, but also the rights of the other fellow students. (Student Affairs: Rights and Responsibilities) Students are people, who have certain specific constitutional rights, and the ACLU or the American Civil Liberties Union is dedicated to protecting these rights of students, and the teachers and administrators of the schools and colleges have the duty to protect these rights and safeguard against violations of the rights of students. The highest Law of the land being the U.S. Constitution, the amendments within the Constitution, also known as the Bill of Rights, guarantees that the government can never ever deprive its people of their basic rights, and some of these are the right to Freedom of Religion, the Right to Free Speech, and also the Right to Privacy. (Student Rights)

Among these several important rights, the Right to Privacy may be the more important one, and although it has not been mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, it has been stated by the Supreme Court that several amendments have created this right, one such Amendment being the Fourth Amendment, which states that no police or any other government agent has the right to search either the person of the student, or any property that belongs to him, without 'probable cause', which, in other words, means that no one can search another person with the belief that he has committed a crime, without exact probable cause that he has done it. It is only when the police have an arrest warrant or a search warrant that has been signed by a judge that they would have the right to search the student or his property. When in school, however, the student does not enjoy unlimited rights to privacy, because of the fact that the school has to obey the rules and regulations of the education board and the federal government. (Your Right to Privacy)

The important Right to Free Expression is another significant right of the student, and what it means is that in order to participate fully in the life of the nation, one must be fully aware of his own rights of expression, by which he can convey his thoughts and actions on any particular issue. The Bill of Rights guarantees this Right under the laws of the government, which state that no single individual or group of people can be deprived of their right to say what they like, or writing what they like. In fact, they have the freedom to form clubs and organizations, and to form or take part in rallies and protest marches, whenever they want to. When in school too, a student has the right to the freedom of expression, which means that he will be able to express his protest or dissatisfaction over something by way of wearing arm bands, or by carrying leaflets and pamphlets, or by wearing buttons, and distributing them to his supporters. (Your Right to Religious Freedom)

However, this student would not be allowed to disrupt classes in a 'material and substantial' manner, wherein classes or other forms of school activities may be disturbed, like for example, when a student sits on the…

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