Table of Contents

ESEA Title VIII (No Child Left Behind, 2002) & revisions
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In March, 2010, President Obama laid out his ideas for revamping the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), commonly known as No Child Left Behind. The abbreviation, NCLB, is often pronounced “nickel-bee.”

At that time, President Obama released a “Blueprint for Reform” (pdf) that outlined his priorities for the law’s reauthorization. The law was written with the cooperation of Democrats and Republicans in 2001, and signed into law in early 2002 by then-President George W. Bush.

He reintroduced ideas for funding education to “Win the Future” in his January, 2011 State of the Union speech, emphasizing budget priorities that Congress will consider for fiscal year 2010-2011.

In March, 2011, President Obama gave new remarks indicating that he wants to see bipartisan cooperation on revisions to the law and its reauthorization by August, 2011.


How to Use This Site

You’ll see this very long law is divided into its component ten sections, or Title I through Title X. You can jump from Title to Title by clicking on the “Legislative focus group and workshop” in the banner, which returns you to the page that lists all the sections.

Click the apple and eraser to go to the home page of for more topical education news.

Within each section, you can add your comments or read those left by others. This is a great opportunity to identify those areas you want your legislator to focus on, and gather feedback from other grassroots parents, educators, and students who want to support and improve public education in America. Please do contact your elected representative and make your views known. also has a legislative agenda where we list bills we support or oppose on POPVOX. We connect you to lawmakers so you can shape the laws that affect your life, and urge you to make use of our page or to contact the district or DC offices of your representative by phone, email, fax, or in a constituent visit to the office.


An Overview of No Child Left Behind

The preamble to this law’s called “Beginning.” It gives you an overview of what the various subsections of the law are called, and functions as an approximate table of contents.

  • Title I is the longest, toughest slog. It contains important information on parent involvement in public education, programs on the development of reading skills, the education of migratory children, provisions for at-risk kids from low-income backgrounds, and advanced placement testing. Mixed in are a lot of rules regarding grant applications by local and state education agencies which aren’t really relevant to individuals.
  • Title II covers funding used to train teachers and principals. It covers specific programs, like Troops-to-Teachers that help veterans get accreditation for civilian teaching jobs, or the National Writing Project or STEM (science, technology, engineering, or math) education, or teachers who use technology to help them teach.
  • Title III addresses Limited English Learners who want to get up to speed in English as well as native speakers of English who seek instruction in global languages.
  • Title IV addresses non-curricular parts of school culture that nevertheless are important part of the school day. These parts of the law address safety issues, from student health and freedom from drug or alcohol abuse, to gun-free and smoke-free zones.
  • Title V emphasizes parental choice among types of schools, and covers charter schools, which are hybrid public- and private-funded schools that operate under different rules than existing public schools. Also covered here: gifted and talented education, magnet schools, women’s education equity, and physical education. It’s a bit of a catch-all category.
  • Title VI talks about flexibility and accountability–again, aimed more at state and local educational agencies that receive federal money. There is one section on calculation of Adequate Yearly Progress, i.e., standardized testing, which is worth looking at, as is the section on Rural Schools.
  • Title VII addresses the education of children who are Native Hawaiian, Native Alaskan, or belong to an American Indian nation. Native people have a different relationship to the federal government that takes into account that recognized tribes have treaties and other kinds of historically-based agreements with the federal government.
  • Title VIII covers federal payments to a very small number of schools which sound like a one-time peculiarity of funding issues relating to those schools. More broadly, this part of the law allows for federal emergency grants to schools to fix school facilities under certain conditions (if no other way of funding it, such as a bond measure, is possible).
  • Title IX gives attention to the federal government’s limited oversight into private schools. This part also addresses rules governing school prayer, equal access to school facilities (such as in school athletic programs where inequality between boys’ and girls’ athletic teams is often an issue), and armed forces recruiting.
  • Title X is again a catch-all area that contains amendments and repeals of sections of prior law. Here you’ll find tweaks to education laws pertaining to homeless children, American Indian children (as it intersects with the Bureau of Indian Affairs), and laws having to do with teacher training.

(a) FOUNDATION PAYMENTS FOR PRE-1995 RECIPIENTS- Section 8002(h)(1) (20 U.S.C. 7702(h)(1)) is amended — (1) in subparagraph (A), by striking and was eligible to receive a payment under section 2 of the Act of September 30, 1950' and inserting and that filed, or has been determined pursuant to statute to have filed a timely application, and met, or has been determined pursuant to statute to meet, the eligibility requirements of section 2(a)(1)(C) of the Act of September 30, 1950'; and (2) in su [...]


(a) ELIGIBILITY FOR CERTAIN HEAVILY IMPACTED LOCAL EDUCATIONAL AGENCIES- (1) IN GENERAL- Section 8003(b)(2)(C) (20 U.S.C. 7703(b)(2)(C)) is amended — (A) in clauses (i) and (ii), by inserting after Federal military installation' each place it appears the following: (or if the agency is a qualified local educational agency as described in clause (iv))'; and (B) by adding at the end the following: (iv) QUALIFIED LOCAL EDUCATIONAL AGENCY- A qualified local educational agency described in this cla [...]


Section 8007(b) (20 U.S.C. 7707(b)) is amended to read as follows: (b) SCHOOL FACILITY EMERGENCY AND MODERNIZATION GRANTS AUTHORIZED- (1) IN GENERAL- From 60 percent of the amount appropriated for each fiscal year under section 8014(e), the Secretary — (A) shall award emergency grants in accordance with this subsection to eligible local educational agencies to enable the agencies to carry out emergency repairs of school facilities; and (B) shall award modernization grants in accordance with th [...]


Section 8009(b)(1) (20 U.S.C. 7709(b)(1)) is amended by inserting after `section 8003(a)(2)(B)' the following: `and, with respect to a local educational agency that receives a payment under section 8003(b)(2), the amount in excess of the amount that the agency would receive if the agency were deemed to be an agency eligible to receive a payment under section 8003(b)(1) and not section 8003(b)(2)'.


(a) IN GENERAL- Section 8014 (20 U.S.C. 7714) is amended in subsections (a), (b), (c), and (f) by striking three succeeding fiscal years' each place it appears and inserting seven succeeding fiscal years'. (b) CONSTRUCTION- Section 8014(e) (20 U.S.C. 7714(e)) is amended by striking for each of the three succeeding fiscal years' and inserting for fiscal year 2001, $150,000,000 for fiscal year 2002, and such sums as may be necessary for each of the five succeeding fiscal years'. (c) ADDITIONAL ASS [...]