Academic journal article Journal of Law and Education

NCLB & the Role of the School District Superintendent

Academic journal article Journal of Law and Education

NCLB & the Role of the School District Superintendent

Article excerpt

In the accompanying article George Petersen and Michelle Young have examined the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act1 as they affect the role of the Superintendent of Schools. Their analysis reveals an intertwining of necessary and urgent change in that role in order for implementation of NCLB to truly result in no child being left behind. The authors point out that urgency to change is also affecting preparation programs for school district leaders as these programs must immediately address the new knowledge, skills and attitudes implicitly required of the district superintendent under NCLB.

The purpose of this section of the Journal is to illuminate the interaction of legislation, social science research and education. In doing so we focus on significant legislative initiatives, beginning with NCLB, and invite scholars to submit work which follows these initiatives through implementation, evaluation and subsequent court cases. The article by Petersen and Young is about those who must lead the implementation. Whether they are passionately trying to succeed or passionately resisting what they see as inappropriate federal intrusion, or trying to walk the line of doing both at once, school district leaders are deeply, some would say frantically, involved in the early stages of implementation of NCLB. In this article the authors examine how this law is forever changing the role of these leaders while they simultaneously try to implement the law.

A problematic tension is described between sources of internal and external control over education and schools, as specific provisions of NCLB and the possible consequences for school district leaders, particularly superintendents, are described. …

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