ESSA Resources

Below are the most recently published resources around ESSA.

Missing or Inconsistent Arts Education Revealing Importance to Overall Student Achievement

Nothing in education has been untouched by the coronavirus pandemic, says a growing number of arts educators calling attention to the effects of limited or completely canceled arts classes on student achievement, morale, and wellness. Jamie Kasper, director of the Arts Education Partnership, cited over…

Association of Business Leaders Releases Education Priorities

Business Roundtable, an association of chief executive officers of America’s leading companies, recently issued a set of education recommendations for members of the business community, who the council says “can be part of the solution [to the opportunity gap] by investing further in programs that…

Department of Ed Reminds Schools of Requirements for Students with Disabilities

Responding to growing confusion around the provision of special education services after a chaotic back-to-school season, the federal Department of Education released several Q&A-styled documents to offer guidance to states and districts still determining their plans for special education. This follows the Department’s declination to…

Parent Details How Accountability Measures Have Helped Students With Disabilities

Writer and mom to a student who happens to have Down’s Syndrome, Vicki Vila discusses how accountability measures put into place by ESSA have helped and motivated schools to ensure a proper learning environment for students who receive special education services at a greater rate…

Wyoming Seeks to Have After-School Programs Supplement School Day

A waiver application pursued by the Wyoming Department of Education would allow community education programs, like those commonly offered by the Boys and Girls Club, to operate during school hours to both supplement learning opportunities but also provide increased childcare options amid school closures. The…

Science and Discovery Labs Rethink Programming and School Supports

When the STEM Technology Lab at the University of New Hampshire was forced due to the spread of the coronavirus, Director Sarah Grosvenor immediately began rethinking how the lab could continue supporting science and technology programs at middle and high schools in the region, as…

Georgia DOE Tweaks Assessment Strategy for 2020-21 After Denied Waiver Request

In response to the decision by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to not grant additional testing waivers to states for the 2020-21 school year, Georgia State Superintendent Richard Woods announced how the state will rethink their approach to administering assessments in the winter and spring. Citing…

Theatre Director Highlights Renewed Need for Arts Education

According to youth theater director Shana Bestock, arts education can provide opportunities for students to develop key social and emotional learning skills and, even amid the pandemic, can still be creatively taught. Bestock shares some suggested ways to adapt theatre and music lessons in a…

Indiana Community Programs Receive Support From ESSA-Funded Grant

Over $10 million will be distributed to 45 “out-of-school” programs in Indiana, according to the state department of education. The fund, which is continued through Title IV of ESSA, focuses on providing support to “local programs providing a safe and enriching learning environment to bolster…

New Jersey Mental Health Program Folded Into Larger State Health Resources, Sparks Concern

The decision to cut funding for an in-school mental health program resulted in some confusion and concern for the communities of the 90 New Jersey schools where the program operates. In response, a spokeswoman for the Department of Children and Families said that mental health…

Two New, Free On-Demand Resources to Empower Student Equity

In a partnership between the National School Boards Association and Learning Science International, two new resources have been developed that aim to help educators and school leaders empower students, increase equity, and drive student achievement. The resources specifically employ the concept of “Academic Teaming” and,…

Second Federal Judge Halts DeVos’ Rule Giving Federal Coronavirus Aid to Private Schools

In the span of a week, two federal judges pressed pause on Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ spring rule to allow a larger portion of federal stimulus dollars targeting public schools to be allocated to private institutions. After the passage of the CARES Act in March,…

Using “Common Sense” to Broaden Evidence Beyond ESSA

Nora Gordon and Carrie Conaway, authors of the new book “Common-Sense Evidence: The Education Leader’s Guide to Using Data and Research,” detail some of their most significant findings as they sought to clarify ESSA’s requirement that instructional interventions and programs adopted by schools be “evidence-based.”…

Using Data to Strengthen Arts Education During and After Pandemic

A partnership between the Education Commission of the States and the National Endowment of the Arts resulted in a toolkit designed to help school systems, education leaders, advocates, and researchers capitalize on publicly reported state education data to improve access to quality arts education. Under…

Oregon Updates 2020-21 Guidance with ESSA Equity Considerations

In new guidance released by the Oregon Department of Education, special consideration is given to how schools can best “ensure equity and access for students” who receive services under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and the Americans…

22 Ed-Tech Products Receive Certification of Approval from Digital Promise

Digital Promise has announced that 22 education products meet the requirements for the organization’s “Research-Based Design Product Certification,” which is intended to “give educators and parents assurance” that intervention products are research-based. The certification builds on the Every Student Succeeds Act’s Tier IV label for…

Reidy Interactive Lecture Series: The Pandemic’s Impact on Assessment and Accountability

In the first completely online Reidy Interactive Lecture Series, the Center for Assessment is focusing on the “implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for assessment and accountability.” Beginning in August and continuing through September, the online series includes webinars discussing the status of summative assessments and…

Louisiana One of Eleven States Receiving Grant to Improve Online Access

Louisiana is one of eleven states receiving new grant funding to provide students with access to resources needed for remote learning, announced the U.S. Department of Education. The $17 million grant will likely be used for devices, internet connectivity, and supplemental remote services like virtual…

Next Stimulus Might Bring Changes to Federal Education Aid

The Thomas B. Fordham Institute’s Michael Petrilli, in examining the developing conversation around additional K-12 stimulus funding for schools, argues that any federal investment should be distributed in a way that directly provides services to kids “most at risk of falling even further behind.” To…

Virginia DOE annual report now provides per-pupil funding for each public school

For the first time since the Every Student Succeeds Act was signed into law in 2015, Virginia’s annual School Quality Profiles report will include per-pupil spending data for each of its public schools, beginning with the 2018-19 school year. “Adding the school-level information to the…

Education Data and COVID-19 Recovery: Resources for Leaders

Two new reports from the Data Quality Campaign discuss the need for educational data as officials continue to make many, complex decisions amid the COVID-19 pandemic and in recovery. The first report focuses directly on the importance of transparency and provides clear ways that education…

Tracking Attendance Remotely Presents Challenges

Researchers and advocates are calling on districts to implement better attendance tracking systems for the upcoming school year. While they note that though “it wasn’t realistic to expect districts to develop and implement perfect attendance systems immediately after the pandemic hit,” such data will be…

School Bus Rides During a Pandemic: Considerations for States and Districts

Transportation has become a significant thorn in the sides of districts working to craft back-to-school plans for the fall, as officials struggle to identify workable solutions for social distancing, sanitation, and scheduling of fleets of busses. In order to meet guidelines released by the Center…

Virginia Implements New Professional Development Program to Retain Novice Teachers

To mitigate teacher shortages, the Virginia Department of Education and the James Madison University College of Education have announced a new partnership called the Virginia New Teacher Support Program, which aims to retain novice teachers in the state. Under this program, first and second-year teachers…

Georgia DOE Requests Input on Seeking Standardized Testing Waiver for 2020-2021 School Year with New Online Survey

As previously reported, Georgia has become the first state to announce its intent to seek a federal testing waiver for the 2020-21 academic year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Officials at the Georgia Department of Education are now asking the public for feedback on this…

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