Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Leadership


The purpose of this study was to research the effects of No Child Left Behind legislation on the enrollment of Career and Technical Education programs in the state of North Dakota. In 2001, the US Congress passed the “No Child Left Behind’' legislation. The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) has initiated much discussion and forced changes to many public school K-12 programs. The legislation was written specifically to address educational issues related to core academic educational programs such as math, English, science, and social studies.

Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs were not addressed in the NCLB legislation, but as part of the public school systems’ programming they have been impacted Because of NCLB, school districts have allocated increased resources of time and money toward the core subjects and focused more of their efforts to improve school test scores. This shift in emphasis has translated into a deliberate commitment to the NCLB initiative at the expense of other programs.

This study used three sets of data to measure the effects of NCLB on CTE programs. One data set was the number of high school students and teachers enrolled from 1999 to 2005 in North Dakota public high schools maintained by the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction. Another data set collected by the State Department of Career and Technical Education provided information on the number of students, the number and types of CTE program areas, and various subcategories of students enrolled in Tech Prep and Nontraditional Career initiatives. The third data set was generated by a 14 question survey of 20 North Dakota CTE administrators. This data provided local perspectives on the effects of NCLB at the school district level.

Data results indicate that CTE, Tech Prep and Nontraditional Career initiatives have a positive effect on student enrollment in CTE programs. NCLB has had little or no impact on CTE '’-tudent enrollment at this time. The data do suggest, however, the impact of NCLB may affect CTE program enrollments in the near future.