The no child left behind act and high school graduation for students with and without disabilities

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2 Scopus citations


The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) (2001) has led to widespread use of high-stakes assessment in determining graduation options for all students, including those with disabilities. In this chapter, we examine graduation trends in the state of Florida before and after the implementation of a high-stakes test used as a means to meet NCLB requirements and further examine specific trends in rates of graduation with a standard diploma attained by students with disabilities. As trends for students with disabilities reveal a reduction in standard diploma attainment, we discuss research related to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) provisions for individualized education program (IEP) and transition planning for students with disabilities that are designed to improve students' graduation and post-school outcomes. We discuss ways in which schools might improve student graduation rates within the context of both NCLB and IDEA. Specifically, we report findings from a study conducted in a school district in Florida that demonstrates a positive relationship between student perceptions of school's efforts to facilitate student involvement in planning (as outlined by IDEA requirements) and the likelihood of graduation with a standard diploma (based on "passing" a high-stakes test) for students both with and without disabilities. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-132
Number of pages26
JournalAdvances in Learning and Behavioral Disabilities
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Rehabilitation


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