The modern history of educational accountability

  • Presenter: Maria Reyes, Ph.D., the University of Texas at Austin
  • Length: 38 minutes

Many researchers believe that Texas’ enviable educational accountability system served as the model for the landmark No Child Left Behind (NCLB) legislation that was passed by the U.S. Congress in 2001, which impacts millions of K-12 children in the U.S. However, the history of Texas’ educational accountability movement is not widely known, and Dr. Maria Reyes revisits the modern history of educational accountability and its impact on K-12 students with a focus on the Latino (primarily Mexican origin) student population.

In this presentation, Maria explains her assessment of academic gains for minority populations, as indicated by NAEP scores, and discusses why NCLB appears to be unpopular legislation among many educators in Texas. In addition, Maria spells out possible reasons why some middle-class parents criticize this legislation that diverts resources and attention away from their children, and why some school administrators, fearing loss of their jobs, put undue pressure on teachers and students to improve students’ test performance.