The Instigator
christ88
Pro (for)
Losing
16 Points
The Contender
beem0r
Con (against)
Winning
21 Points

The No Child Left Behind program hinders the more capable.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/30/2008 Category: Education
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,110 times Debate No: 4553
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (11)

 

christ88

Pro

Short and simple is the way to keep opening arguments I believe so here it goes.

No Child Left Behind hinders students that are more capable of learning. It also spends valuable tax money on students that will not affect society in largely positive way. Money should be spent on students and people that have potential. Why does society make us elaborate dreams and futures for kids that obviously won't have any.

If a child shows potential at anytime or any subject that is valuable to society, then spend money, give time, offer assistance to that child in that subject. If a child shows no potential for anything but manual labor, don't force education on him. He will become, with the help of the school or without it, a man working a minimum wage job.
beem0r

Con

The "No Child Left Behind" act hurts no one but taxpayers. All it does is allocate MORE funds to education. It does not take money from more gifted individuals.

My opponent uses a false dichotomy. He claims that we can either help disadvantaged kids or help kids who are succeeding. This is untrue - we can do both.

We start with more money for teachers. The effect is more people willing to teach, higher competition for teaching jobs, and therefore we have more and better teachers. No one suffers, except the taxpayers who have to pay for it.

So basically, the No Child Left Behind program is a boon for all students, even the already-capable. I believe I have established this firmly, so I ask my opponent to establish a means by which capable students are hindered by the program.
Debate Round No. 1
christ88

Pro

While it is absolutely true that NCLB's (No Child Left Behind) only purpose is to provide funding for schools, it is still a major hindrance.

NCLB provides not only beneficial consequences but also punitive consequences. These rewards or punishments are based on performance to a standard level and increasing this performance every year. However, there is no requirement as to what the tests are that measure this level. By punishing schools for not meeting a standard grade, yet not requiring a mandatory ubiquitous test, schools lower their standards as to avoid cuts in funding. Does this lowering of standards affect a slower progressing student? No, but it does take away much motivation for more gifted students that no longer have to try on the tests.

Also, with a standardized state tests, teachers are encouraged to "teach the test". This means they teach what they think will be on the standardized test. This lowers many of the broad range subjects that classes used to include to focus on helping struggling students pass a test. The more intellectual students do not require half of a year to prepare for their standardized test and have to waste time that would be better spent on furthering their education instead of learning that one should "narrow down the answer first and then if you don't know guess..."

And to answer the funding of teachers; go for it. Give the teachers more money. But the taxpayers are stretched pretty thin right now so good luck with finding the funds.
beem0r

Con

Let's think about schools before and after NCLB.

Before NCLB, a school gets X money. We'll call x 1,000,000 USD.
With NCLB, a school either gets that same 1,000,000 USD [If they don't meet the NCLB standard], or they receive more money, we'll say 1,300,000 USD.

My opponent's first point is that NCLB will make education worse. If schools get more money, though, it just so happens that this means more salary for teachers, or more money for other educational tools. This has the direct effect of making edcuation better.

My opponent's next point is that teachers spend more time on the students that are struggling than on students who are already doing well. This is true with or without NCLB. Teachers teach the curriculum required for their class. If some students aren't fully understanding that curriculum, it would be quite irresponsible to delve into new material not required for the course.

Next, my opponent criticizes standardized state tests [oddly enough, this was but a few paragraphs after criticizing non-standardized tests]. He claims that teachers will usually teach the test material with NCLB. This is true, but it's true regardless. The test's whole purpose is to test if you know the important material from the class. Just as above, teaching anything not on the test would be irresponsible if students are still having trouble with the material deemed important enough to be possible questions on the test. If everyone understands the material, then it's fine to go on to more obscure or complex things than is necessary. With or without NCLB this is true.

If you want a school that allows you to maximiaze your learning if you are gifted, go to a Montessori school, a private school, or some other specialty school. The public school system, with or without NCLB, is meant for the everyman, and classes with move at the everyman's pace.

And as far as finding the money for paying the teachers more money: I am not here to argue that NCLB is a wise monetary decision, or that we can easily afford it. I'm here to argue that it is not what is hindering more capable students.
Debate Round No. 2
christ88

Pro

christ88 forfeited this round.
beem0r

Con

What is left to say? My opponent has folded under the weight of my argument.

The allegations made against the NCLB program were inconsistent - my opponent claimed that no standardized testing made schools lower their standards, but then complained about standardized tests and how schools only teach the material that's on the tests.

All the information in the curriculum is taught regardless. The more capable students will know this information before the test, and will do well. It is ridiculous to assume that the school should teach at the pace of the fastest kids. The public school system is made for everyman, not for the elite. This is true with and without NCLB. IF you're unsatisfied with the learning pace, find a private or charter school that fits your needs.
For instance, from 4th grade until 8th grade, I went to a Montessori school. Since it was also a charter school, it was free. Montessori schools are built around the idea that everyone should learn at their own pace. Thus, I was able to learn far more there than I would have in a traditional school. This is what my opponent expects of the Public School System, but it simply would not happen, with or without No Child Left Behind.
No Child Left Behind only hurts the taxpayers. It does nothing but help students, by providing better teachers and other financial benefits, like a better library or something.

So yeah. My opponent forfeited, so that's it.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
"For once, I actually agree with a Christian. Scary."

2 + 2 = 4
Posted by Maya9 8 years ago
Maya9
For once, I actually agree with a Christian. Scary.
Posted by christ88 8 years ago
christ88
I am terribly sorry to beem0r for not finishing this argument. There was definitely more left for me to say and I must admit this site slipped my mind.
The main problem with NCLB that I did fail to mention in my argument (and this is not to win the debate anymore, by forgetting that round I am prepared for the loss), is that the funding goes towards the basic classes. Funding should be put towards basic classes, but it should not be taken from higher level classes.
I understand not wanting an elitist school, but to force the students with potential to have to pay more for a private school seems ridiculous. If anything, the kids that have trouble learning should pay more to learn and we should be helping the students that will improve our society by giving their education our funding.
Posted by Wierdkp326 8 years ago
Wierdkp326
hmm, can't wait to see round 2
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Vote Placed by Jamesothy 8 years ago
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christ88beem0rTied
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Vote Placed by Logical-Master 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by kaleidoughscope 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by LakevilleNorthJT 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by CP 8 years ago
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