The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was passed by Congress and signed by the President in December 2015. ESSA reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) and will replace No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and Alaska’s current NCLB Flexibility Waiver. Alaska’s transition to, and implementation of, ESSA will be a thorough and thoughtful process informed by meaningful consultation with state and local education stakeholders.
ESSA requires that State Educational Agencies (SEAs) develop a State Plan addressing three components: Standards and Assessments; School, District, and State Accountability Systems; and School Support and Improvement.
SEAs must develop state plans “with timely and meaningful consultation with the Governor, members of the State legislature and State board of education, local educational agencies, representatives of Indian tribes located in the State, teachers, principals, other school leaders, charter school leaders, specialized instructional support personnel, paraprofessionals, administrators, other staff, and parents.” (Every Student Succeeds Act, Sec. 1111)
Federal regulations and guidance are being developed on an ongoing basis by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to direct and support implementation of ESSA.
To facilitate the transition to ESSA, the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development (DEED) is conducting a review of the work required to fully implement the new law. As with implementation of any program of such significance and complexity, changes will occur over the course of months and even years. Some changes were initiated immediately upon signing, some will be implemented relatively quickly, and others will be finalized over the course of the next two years only upon receipt of additional federal regulations and guidance, and collaborative input by state and local education stakeholders.
The Education Department has a year from the date of enactment (December 10, 2015) to issue final regulations.
- Final regulations, guidance, and regulatory information
- Comments on proposed regulations
The ESEA Flexibility Waivers ended August 1, 2016.
Funds for formula programs such as Titles I-A, I-C, I-D, II-A, and III-A provided to districts for activities during the 2016-17 school year will continue to be administered in accordance with NCLB, not ESSA, based on the FY2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act passed by Congress.
Based on the accountability regulations that were finalized on November 28, 2016, the new State-designed accountability systems will take effect at the beginning of the 2018-19 school year.
Documents and tools that support stakeholders to build knowledge of the timeline and requirements of ESSA.
Awareness materials related to the timeline and requirements of ESSA.
- View ED’s ESSA Guidance and Regulatory Information Webinars
- ESSA Briefing to the Joint Education Committee by Lee Posey, National Conference of State Legislatures (powerpoint)
- ESSA: Land of Opportunity Presentation to the ASDN 2016 Spring Leadership Conference by Attorney Steven Spillan, Brustein & Manasevit, PLLC (pdf)