Best interests of students left behind?
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Analyzes the impact of recent policy developments in the USA associated with school accountability according to the best interests of the student. With the mandated implementation of the US federal law entitled the No Child Left Behind Act approaching, minimal attention has been afforded to the complex ethical dimensions associated with policies intended to improve the quality of education on a broad scale. When the meaning of "fairness" and "equity" are not negotiated in advance by groups either supporting or rejecting the need for federal intervention, doubts are raised about the fundamental purpose of the initiative. Argues that social conflict arises when the ideological framing of the purposes of the No Child Left Behind Act fails to incorporate the moral responsibility of policymaking and professional practice and attribute the purpose of reform as ensuring students' best interests. Argues for a greater awareness of the tacit ethical assumptions politicians and policymakers embrace as policy is developed and implemented, and suggests strategies for identifying an ideological common ground. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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