The NCLB Consensus: Lasting Force or Passing Fancy?
About This Event

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The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) is the most influential piece of federal education legislation in American history. By setting standards for measuring student performance, ensuring the quality of teachers, and providing options for students in ineffective schools, NCLB seeks to ensure that all American students are proficient in math and reading by 2014. But even teachers, policymakers, and journalists are often confused about the law’s expansive provisions.

In No Child Left Behind Primer (Peter Lang, February 2006), co-authors Frederick Hess of AEI and Michael Petrilli of the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation have produced a concise yet comprehensive citizen’s guide to this complex law. In their book, the authors trace the origins of the act, explain how its many provisions work, and identify the effects of—and challenges to—its implementation.

Hess and Petrilli will discuss their book and what the future holds for NCLB, especially with reauthorization looming in 2007. Panelists Kati Haycock, director of The Education Trust; Alice Johnson Cain, senior education aide to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce; Joel Packer, manager of NCLB policy at the National Education Association; and former deputy secretary of education Eugene Hickok will contribute to the discussion.

3:45 p.m.
Michael J. Petrilli, Thomas B. Fordham Foundation
Kati Haycock, The Education Trust
Eugene Hickok, former deputy secretary of education
Alice Johnson Cain, House Committee on Education and the Workforce
Joel Packer, National Education Association
Frederick M. Hess, AEI
Wine and Cheese Reception
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AEI Participants


Frederick M.
  • An educator, political scientist and author, Frederick M. Hess studies K-12 and higher education issues. His books include "Cage-Busting Leadership," "Breakthrough Leadership in the Digital Age," "The Same Thing Over and Over," "Education Unbound," "Common Sense School Reform," "Revolution at the Margins," and "Spinning Wheels." He is also the author of the popular Education Week blog, "Rick Hess Straight Up." Hess's work has appeared in scholarly and popular outlets such as Teachers College Record, Harvard Education Review, Social Science Quarterly, Urban Affairs Review, American Politics Quarterly, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Phi Delta Kappan, Educational Leadership, U.S. News & World Report, National Affairs, the Washington Post, the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic and National Review. He has edited widely cited volumes on the Common Core, the role of for-profits in education, education philanthropy, school costs and productivity, the impact of education research, and No Child Left Behind.  Hess serves as executive editor of Education Next, as lead faculty member for the Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program, and on the review boards for the Broad Prize in Urban Education and the Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools. He also serves on the boards of directors of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and 4.0 SCHOOLS. A former high school social studies teacher, he teaches or has taught at the University of Virginia, the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, Rice University and Harvard University. He holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Government, as well as an M.Ed. in Teaching and Curriculum, from Harvard University.

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