On December 10, 2015, President Barack Obama signed into law the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) which has been touted as the long needed “fix” of the No Child Left Behind Act enacted under President George W. Bush.
It is worth noting that the ESSA is extremely lengthy and complex. The law, in its entirety, is linked above for anyone who would like to read it. The positive spin that has accompanied ESSA is that it responds to the public outcry about over-testing, federal overreach and local control. There are many aspects of the ESSA that I could blog about in lengthy detail, but the purpose of this blog to point out what has been wagered and to stress the importance of your involvement.
The U.S. Department of Education is laying a bet that the largely passive and uninvolved population will not be proactive in their roles. Superintendent John White is embarking on a statewide informational tour on ESSA implementation. The language of ESSA is explicit in requiring that ALL stakeholders participate in the development of the State’s accountability plan, including parents. The ruse is that White is delivering the message that our current accountability plan meets the requirements of ESSA, so we will keep it. By definition, it does not. The participation in development is absent. These meetings are only intended to be for Q&A, and nothing said at these meetings will be regarded as input, nor will it effect the outcome of the accountability plan. It is vitally important that we (parents, teachers, community members, board members, etc.) populate these meetings and impress upon Mr. White that we know what is happening, and we won’t stand for it. Below, you will find the location, date and time for each meeting. The link will take you to a Facebook event that you can RSVP to indicate your participation. Please help to spread the word to your friends, family and coworkers.