In December of 2015 No Child Left Behind was replaced with t…

In December of 2015 No Child Left Behind was replaced with the “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA). In 3-4 pages, using APA style formatting, compare the two acts giving specific examples of how the changes affect the day to day job of classroom teachers. Provide at least 4-5 citations from credible sources.



A Comparative Analysis of No Child Left Behind and the Every Student Succeeds Act: Implications for Classroom Teachers


Since its implementation in 2002, the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) has been the cornerstone legislation governing the American education system. Designed to improve student performance and close achievement gaps, NCLB emphasized standardization, accountability, and data-driven decision-making at both the state and federal levels. However, in December 2015, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) replaced NCLB as the primary federal education law.

This paper aims to compare the NCLB and ESSA acts, focusing specifically on their implications for the day-to-day responsibilities of classroom teachers. By evaluating changes in standards, accountability measures, and teacher evaluations, this analysis provides an overview of how ESSA has altered the educational landscape.


Under NCLB, states were required to adopt standards in reading, mathematics, and science, with standardized testing used to assess student performance. These standards were heavily focused on academic proficiency, primarily measured by annual state assessments. ESSA, on the other hand, affords more flexibility for states to develop their own standards. It emphasizes a more holistic approach to education, encompassing a wider range of factors such as student engagement, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills.

1. Alexander, K., Pitcock, S., Barr, A., & Balfanz, R. (2015). Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA): A Summary of the Key Provisions Relating to Accountability for Schools and Students. Everyone Graduates Center.
2. Betebenner, D. W. (2018). ESSA and assessment: A balancing act to promote educational justice. Children and Youth Services Review, 84, 3-8.

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