At-Risk Student Groups

Below are the most recent news, reports, and recommendations on how to use ESSA better serve at-risk student groups.

Making the Case for Increased Federal Funding for Schools

In an op-ed for the Daily Jeff, Amy Kissinger discusses the need to increase federal funding for public schools in Ohio and nationwide. As part of the National School Board Association, Kissinger recently met with elected officials in Washington “to advocate for the more than…

Pittsburg Schools On Alert as Chronic Absenteeism Rates Set to Increase this Year

According to data presented to the Pittsburgh Public Schools (PPS) board last week, “chronic absenteeism was set to increase by nearly 3%,” raising concerns among district officials. According to Ted Dwyer, chief of data, research, assessment and accountability for PPS, chronically absent students—those who miss…

New Review Shows Louisiana Excels in Some Areas, Lags Behind in Others

“Louisiana is informing parents about school performance better than other states are,” according to the results of a review by the Alliance for Excellent Education. These results highlight how local schools are responding since the Every Student Succeeds Act was enacted. However, there remain a…

While Steady Overall, High School Graduation Rates Decrease Among Idaho Hispanics

According to the State Department of Education, “Idaho’s high school graduation rate remained flat in 2019, inching up a fraction of a percentage point.” However, “new data reveals the graduation rates for Hispanic students and students with disabilities dropped significantly.” While the overall graduation rate…

Funding Provided Under ESSA, Local Initiative Provides Greater Access to Education

Economically disadvantaged students in Klamath Falls City Schools in Oregon will now have access to new laptops in an effort to remove economic barriers to education that prevent low-income students from accessing the same opportunities. “Thanks to funds provided by Oregon Ballot Measure 98 and…

Who Should Decide Attendance Policies—States or Districts?

According to Education Dive, a new bill in the Wyoming Legislature reflects a larger question for school districts grappling to address attendance and absenteeism issues. If passed, it would allow districts to set their own policies regarding excused and unexcused absences and to decide how…

Inconsistent English-Learner Data Collection Poses Challenges for Educators, Policymakers

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) included several requirements to provide greater equity for English language learners. However, according to Education Week, “in at least 28 states, more than 1 in 5 districts have no information reported for the past three years of available [English-learner]…

Florida Legislators Introduce Bill to Let English-Language Learners Test in Native Languages

While the Every Student Succeeds Act requires states “to ‘make every effort’ to provide required exams in languages other than English if needed,” Florida’s Department of Education received an exemption in 2017 by arguing that English is Florida’s official language. Now, a bipartisan group of…

While Achievement Gaps Persist, D.C. Schools Show Signs of Improvement Overall

According to the District of Columbia’s star rankings, released just last week, D.C. schools are showing “improvements across the city” despite the fact that an “achievement gap on standardized tests” between low-income students and more affluent ones continues to persist. This is the second year…

Amid Failure, 3 Counties Offer Hope in Improving Outcomes for California Foster Youth

Many school districts in California are “struggling to live up to a now three-year-old federal requirement,” originally set by the Every Student Succeeds Act, to “ensure foster youth have educational stability.” Under ESSA, educational and child welfare agencies are to collaborate “to create transportation plans…

Despite Improvement, Racial Achievement Gap Persists in some North Carolina Schools

Education officials in Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools see some signs of improvement in a racial achievement gap, but there is still work to be done, according to Matt Goad for News & Observer. According to accountability results, the district met just under a quarter of…

Georgia School District Reaches New Academic Heights

Glynn County Schools in Georgia made “momentous gains on the recently released 2019 College and Career Ready Performance Index (CCRPI).” The district outperformed state averages and, according to the Georgia Department of Education, received “the highest score ever recorded in Glynn County Schools history.” The…

Latino Student Performance in Idaho Lags Behind White Peers

Despite being recognized as “critical to Idaho’s economic future,” the success of Latino students in the state continues to lag behind their peers, according to this piece in Idaho EdNews. “The number of Latino student in Idaho schools has nearly doubled in the past two…

Foster Youth Data Still Being Unreported in NYC, Several Districts Statewide Despite ESSA

Once again, “school achievement data for foster youth, considered one of the most vulnerable and least tracked student groups, will not be reported for the nation’s largest school district…despite its being mandated” by ESSA. The New York City Department of Education says, “it will identify…

Montana Gets $50-Million Federal Literacy Grant

According to the Sydney Herald, Montana has received a five-year, $50 million literacy grant from the U.S. Department of Education as part of the Striving Readers Comprehensive State Development Program. The grant has several “outcome expectations,” including increasing “the percentage of all participating disadvantaged student…

Los Angeles Finalizes $14 million Foster Student Plan

Los Angeles might soon stand out as an early leader in figuring out how to overcome barriers to fulfilling ESSA’s promises to foster students, reports Susan Abram for the Chronicle of Social Change, as the district recently approved a five-year, $14 million transportation plan for…

States Struggling to Live Up to Law on Foster Students

“Under federal law, states are required to help maintain a stable educational environment for youth in foster care, even when the children’s personal lives are in tumult,” writes Rebecca Klein for Huffington Post. “But most places are struggling to follow the law, according to a…

Early-Childhood More Segregated than K-12 Programs

In Education Dive, Linda Jacobson reports on how early-childhood programs of all kinds are “twice as likely as kindergarten and 1st-grade classrooms to have all black or all Hispanic children,” and are “also less likely to be ‘somewhat integrated’ with 10-20% of children being black…

School Officials “Get Personal” in Fighting Absenteeism

In Education Dive, Shawna De La Rosa takes a look at how school districts and administrators are using innovative methods to fight absenteeism—from “going door-to-door to talk with students and their families about the importance of going to school, to sending text messages and automated…

“Left Behind” Kids “Made Incredible Progress from 90s to Great Recession”

This summer, the Fordham Institute’s Michael Petrilli has been “trying to make sense of the sizable gains made by America’s lowest-performing students and kids of color that coincided with the peak of the modern education reform movement.” He wraps up his series on this topic…

LA County, Rideshare, and Foster Youth

Since ESSA’s passage, “school districts and child welfare agencies around the country have been tasked with developing transportation plans to keep foster youth in their schools of origin if that is what they prefer.” Sara Tiano examines Los Angeles County’s approach to fulfilling this requirement,…

Leveraging ESSA to Reduce Absenteeism

“The Every Student Succeeds Act puts more pressure on schools to ensure their students show up every day,” writes Evie Blad for Education Week. “But when it comes to addressing chronic absenteeism, some educators and policy makers say they are building the plane in the…

Indiana Falling Short When It Comes to Foster Students?

According to The 74, this spring, when Indiana released a “bleak report” regarding educational outcomes for students in foster care, it “broke new ground in making public the state’s troubling statistics.” And the “same Indiana law that called for the first-ever release of the distressing…

Improving Scores in Louisiana, But Most Students Still Face Challenges

According to New Orleans City Business, public school students in Louisiana are doing better on standardized tests, but most students are still not meeting proficiency standards, as outlined in the state’s accountability plan. “The results released today show our students and educators are making gains…

California Contemplates Fifth-Year Grad Rate

According to John Fensterwald at EdSource, California “may soon join most states in creating a 5-year high school graduation rate as a way of crediting districts and high schools that help students who return to school after senior year to earn a diploma.” This new…