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U.S. Department of Education releases final accountability & state plans regulations

The U.S. Department posted final regulations on the implementation of accountability, data reporting, and state plan provisions of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to the federal register today. The Department is expected to release guidance on the regulations within the next several weeks and host a series of webinars beginning in January 2017.

Following are several provisions of the regulations denoting what the Department says states can and must do, the new timeline, and links to the Department’s full regulatory document, fact sheet, timeline, and press release.

  • The final regulations are giving states until the 2018-19 school year to identify schools for comprehensive targeted support and improvement.
  • States can set their own goals and measurements of interim progress for academic outcomes, but must have robust, multi-indicator statewide accountability systems for all public schools, including all public charter schools.
  • States are allowed to choose their own indicators of Academic Progress and School Quality or Student Success, but the chosen measures must be supported by research as likely to increase student learning.
  • All students, that is each student subgroup, must be considered separately in each statewide accountability system.
  • States must identify low-performing (within certain criteria) schools for comprehensive support and improvement at least once every three years, and also identify schools for targeted support and improvement.
  • States and districts are allowed to select evidence-based strategies tailored to local needs.
  • States must continue to direct funds set aside for school improvement to schools most in need of support.
  • States may choose from two submission dates—April 3, 2017 or September 18, 2017.

July 2016, NSBA filed extensive comments on the Department’s draft rule, providing recommendations for amending the proposed regulations in a manner that reaffirms ESSA's restoration of local governance and community ownership of public education. NSBA's full comments can be accessed here.

U.S. Department of Education’s final rule as submitted to the Federal Register, Nov. 29

http://www2.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/essa/essaaccountstplans1129.pdf

Fact Sheet

http://www2.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/essa/essafactsheet1127.pdf

Timeline

http://www2.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/essa/essacctchart1127.pdf

Press release

http://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/education-department-releases-final-regulations-promote-high-quality-well-rounded-education-and-support-all-students

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