Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Instruction & Curriculum Leadership

Committee Chair

Beverly Cross

Committee Member

Brian Wright

Committee Member

Crystal White

Committee Member

Michelle Armstrong


The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) has been cited as the pinnacle of the high-stakes accountability movement. NCLB required all students (subgroups) in public education to achieve 100% proficiency in reading and mathematics by 2014 on individual state-mandated standardized tests. The federal government authorized each state the right to define the measures that constituted proficiency (USDOE, 2002, NCLB ACT, Section 1111(2) B). This study revealed how the proliferation of neoliberal reform initiatives perpetuates the marginalization of urban inner-city school students. Under the guise of student subgroups, NCLB labeled students by race and ethnicity, academic status, and social identity. The major contribution of this study identified the invisible and fixed practice of labeling and sanctioning as a major tool of neoliberalism, which further perpetuates the marginalization of urban inner-city school students. The idea of race and ethnicity, social identity, and academic status have been a pillar of educational reform initiatives in public education. The idea of sanctioning and labeling coalesces to create fixed ideals that proliferate the marginalization of urban inner-city school students.


Data is provided by the student

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest.


Open Access