POL 321 Lecture Notes - Lecture 18: Adequate Yearly Progress, Standardized Test, Externality

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Lecture 18
Government Role in Education
Government justification for being involved in k-12 education is mainly economic, due to
the positive externality for society of developing an educated workforce
o Also moral because it is right to give everyone to opportunity/launchpad
o Political because it makes the democracy healthier with more informed people
(optimistic view) or people like receiving things that are free so can gain votes
(pessimistic view)
K-12 education is not a public good
Traditionally, k-12 education up to local government with state overview
o Recall that states give local governments all of their authority
~40-50% of funding comes from state & local each, minor federal funding
Federal government provides only ~10% of funding & plays a very small role in policy
o State & local governments provide most of the funds & set most of the policies
All funding is per-pupil amounts, so changes in number of students at a school change the
amount of funding they get
In the 1960s, the role of the federal government in education begins to change
Elementary & Secondary Education Act (1965)created to provide funding to certain
schools as part of broader poverty initiatives
o Title 1funds for low-income schools
Otherwise, if relying on local taxes, wealthier areas have higher-quality schools
Trying to address this inequity
o Title 9if you discriminate on basis of sex, no federal funding
Becomes more effective when federal role grows
o Even with this additional money from the federal government, still mostly just local
& state involvement with k-12 education
No Child Left Behind (2001)bipartisan piece of legislation under George W. Bush with
3 broad goals
o Goal 1: mechanisms for accountability for performance of schools
States set proficiency standards for all levels/grade in Math & English
States then must come up with tests to assess the standards
Taken each year in grades 3-8, then 1 time in high school
States come up with a cut-off for baseline proficiency score
Finally, must report to public what percent of students meet the cut-off
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP)goals set by the states of what percent of
students will meet baseline proficiency cut-off in school each year; end goal of
100% by 2014
o Goal 2: improve teacher quality
o Goal 3: sanctions for underperforming schools
If you don’t meet your AYP, get sanctions that worsen each time
They are cumulative
1 year: places on School Improvement List
2 years: must allow students to transfer to other schools
Will lead to a drop in funding since it is per-pupil
3 years: must provide additional services to students for free, such as tutoring
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