School Law Bulletin #2002/10

Changes Affecting Elementary and Secondary Education

Tuesday, October 1, 2002

In 2002 the biggest changes in education policy came from the federal government, not from traditional state policymakers. The new federal No Child Left Behind Act had state education officials, local policymakers, and educators scrambling to address the act’s many mandates. Across the nation, education leaders were enmeshed in the first steps of implementing the act. At the same time, North Carolina state and local officials were waiting for state courts to fully resolve a myriad of issues related to providing a “sound basic education” to all students. With these issues swirling around, it may have been a relief to educators that 2002 was a year in which the General Assembly made few substantive changes to the state’s school statutes. Instead, its most significant actions were in protecting elementary and secondary schools from deep budget cuts and appropriating new funds for ABCs Program bonuses, assistance teams for low-performing schools, and class-size reduction for first grades.

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Public Officials - Local and State Government Roles