'Let's Not Weaken It'

Former President George W. Bush spoke to TIME education columnist Andrew J. Rotherham on Jan. 9, 10 years after he signed NCLB into law

Tom Pennington—Getty Images

Bush

Mr. President, 10 years in, what's your take on No Child Left Behind?
First of all, I am extremely proud of the effects of No Child Left Behind. For the first time, the federal government basically demanded results in return for money. It started by saying, We expect you to measure [student performance]. As a result, there has been a noticeable change in achievement, particularly among minority groups. And I'm proud of that accomplishment and proud of the fact we were able to work with people from both parties to get it done.

When I think back about No Child...

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