Federal Programs
By and large, the selection and funding for instructional materials and assessments occurs at the state and local level. However, a variety of federal programs under the Elementary and Secondary Act (most recently amended by the No Child Left Behind Act) also provide some funding for instructional activities, materials, and assessments.

Since enactment of NCLB in January 2002, the AAP School has made a number of recommendations regarding fair and effective implementation of two centerpiece programs in NCLB: Reading First and annual testing.

Reading First

AAP supports the Reading First and Early Reading First programs and their expansion. At its current funding level, Reading First reaches only about 6 percent of the children at risk for academic failure due to weak reading skills. Instructional materials used and programs implemented under Reading First should continue to meet rigorous and scientifically based criteria. In addition:

  • Selection of instructional programs under Reading First and federal oversight must be transparent and fair.
  • Schools and school districts must be afforded flexibility in choosing from a variety of research-based instructional programs.
  • Reading First criteria should encourage the development and use of new and innovative instructional programs.


For additional AAP views on Reading First implementation, please visit:

  • Statement by AAP President/CEO Pat Schroeder on Reading First Implementation (Sept. 28, 2006). Click here
  • Letter from AAP President/CEO Pat Schroeder to U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige (March 15, 2002) requesting the U.S. Department of Education to issue a letter of guidance confirming that there was not an “approved list” for Reading First programs. Click here
  • Reply to AAP President/CEO Pat Schroeder from U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige (Sept. 10, 2002) giving assurances that there is no “approved list” of instructional materials for use in connection with Reading First. Click here

Annual Testing

AAP supports the continued use of annual assessments under NCLB to measure student achievement. Annual assessments provide teachers and parents with the information they need to make sound decisions regarding the education of students. Instruction and learning should be supported by “formative” classroom assessments that utilize the latest technology to enable teachers to administer frequent tests that yield data that can be used to improve classroom instruction and engage students in their own learning. All assessments must be valid, fair, and reliable. They must meet the highest technical standards, and they must be aligned with rigorous state standards.

For more information, please visit www.testingfacts.org and AAP’s Recommendations for NCLB Reauthorization (below).

AAP’s Recommendations for NCLB Reauthorization

The AAP School Division and its member companies strongly support the reauthorization of NCLB. AAP members believe that the reauthorization and expanded investments in our education systems are necessary at this time. NCLB plays an essential role in helping all students attain academic proficiency and in closing achievement gaps. We urge reauthorization to be considered as a national priority and to be completed in 2007. Please click here  to view the AAP School Division’s NCLB reauthorization recommendations in seven key areas:

1.         Instructional Materials Access & Opportunity
2.         Striving Readers
3.         Reading First
4.         Math & Science Programs
5.         Education Assessment Under NCLB
6.         Technology
7.         Teacher Quality

For more information contact: Jay Diskey, jdiskey@publishers.org

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