No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and its Effect on High School Foreign Language Programs
Mohler, Sarah Marie
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SHS is a Michigan public high school that has been negatively affected by budget cuts that have taken place due to education reform programs such as No Child Left Behind. Many aspects of the school environment including the types and numbers of educational programs offered to students have been influenced by this loss of funding and focus on other academic programs that are directly dependent on the principles of NCLB. Due to budget cuts, many changes have been implemented at SHS in order to decrease spending of educational funds. By cutting these foreign language departments in half, the school is able to budget its money in different, sometimes more “important” areas. One result is not having to pay as many teachers a full-time salary, or having to offer them all of the same benefits as full-time teachers, clearly saving the school and the district a large amount of money. With half as many foreign language classes, fewer teachers need to be hired, fewer textbooks need to be purchased, and fewer materials need to be ordered; however, fewer students are able to continue their high school study of a foreign language, which, according to NCLB, is a core academic subject area.