The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB), which first went into effect beginning with the 2002-03 school year, reauthorized the Title I program and made a number of significant changes. NCLB strengthened the accountability provisions of the law, requiring that states establish assessments in each grade from 3-8 and once in grades 10-12, and set annual targets for school and district performance that would lead to all students reaching proficiency on those assessments by the 2013-14 school year. Schools and districts that do not make adequate yearly progress (AYP) towards this goal are identified as needing improvement and are subject to increasing levels of interventions designed to improve their performance and provide additional options to their students. NCLB also required that all teachers of core academic subjects become highly qualified, which the law defines as holding a bachelor's degree and full state certification, as well as demonstrating competence, as defined by the state, in each core academic subject that he or she teaches. These and other changes were intended to increase the quality and effectiveness not only of the Title I program, but of the entire elementary and secondary education system in raising the achievement of all students, particularly those with the lowest achievement levels.
This report expands and updates the information provided in the National Assessment of Title I Interim Report that was released in April 2006.