U.S. Department of Education Names Committee Members to Draft Proposed Regulations for Every Student Succeeds Act

TEDNA Member Representative Leslie Harper Named Tribal Leadership Negotiator on ESSA Rulemaking Committee


The U.S. Department of Education today named committee members who will draft proposed regulations in two areas of Title I, Part A of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). This is the latest step in the process of implementing ESSA.

“We look forward to working with the committee to promote equity and excellence for all students by providing states and school districts with timely regulations so that they can plan ahead and support students and educators,” said Ann Whalen, senior advisor to the secretary, delegated the duties of the assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education.

ESSA replaces the outdated No Child Left Behind law and expands on the work this Administration, states, districts and schools across the country have already started. The new law will help build on key progress that we’ve made in education over recent years—including a record high school graduation rate of 82 percent, significant expansion of high-quality preschool, and a million more African American and Hispanic students enrolled in college than in 2008, when President Obama took office.

ESSA promotes equitable access to educational opportunities in critical ways, such as asking states to hold all students to high academic standards to prepare them for college and careers and ensuring action in the lowest-performing schools, high schools with low graduation rates, and in schools that are consistently failing subgroups of students. Maintaining effective, high-quality assessments and ensuring that all states and districts know how to meet the updated “supplement not supplant” requirement are crucial to achieving these objectives.

For more information, click here.

Every Student Succeeds Act Webinar TODAY!

On December 10, 2015, the President signed into law the “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA), amending the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA).  The Department of Education is now in the process of helping States and districts transition to and implement the law.  On February 4, 2015, the Department published a notice of intent to engage in negotiated rulemaking to:

  • update existing assessment regulations to reflect changes to section 1111(b)(2) of ESEA, and
  • to prepare proposed regulations related to the requirement under Section 1118(b) of ESEA, that title I, part A funds be used to supplement, and not supplant, non-Federal funds.

To help our stakeholders understand and be involved in this process, the Department is hosting a webinar, including a brief Q&A, on Wednesday, February 17, 2016, from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. Eastern time, to provide an overview of the rulemaking process, including negotiated rulemaking. Space is limited and will be provided on a first come, first served basis.  For this reason, we ask that groups have a single representative join.  For those who cannot attend, the webinar will be posted afterwards on http://www.ed.gov/essa

Via HuffPo Education: A Critical Silent Win of Every Student Succeeds Act

An excerpt:

Sitting on a plane on my way home from Seattle, I am sorting through reflections on the historical end of No Child Left Behind and the passing, at the end of last year, of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The turbulence makes it difficult to type but that simply adds to the symbolism of the journey our nation’s education has taken over the past two decades: bumpy and unnerving. Now, there is a new law and a plethora of provisions in it to applaud. I want to offer my accolades for a subtle but valuable win, the recognition of Native American education. I had just spent a weekend in Washington State to offer Common Core literacy training for tribal school educators. It was during this time that I realized how significant of a win the new legislation is for the 567 federally recognized tribes of Native Americans.

Around 20 of us — teachers and administrators –gathered at the Muckleshoot Tribal College in Washington State, a college on the Muckleshoot reservation, to practice blending a recently-mandated Native American curriculum into the college’s content classes using Common Core instructional practices. Despite the varied grades, content areas, and educational roles, our purpose for spending the weekend learning together was to ensure that native and non-native teachers could utilize culturally-responsive teaching practices and texts to ensure that native students had more equitable access to quality culture-based instruction. Several educators mentioned the literacy challenges their students face because of the lack of resources and support in the community. Native and non-native teachers discussed how important it is to embed the students’ culture into instructional practice but this would mean more communication between schools, tribes, and the community. There was a voice of determination for success despite the frustration.

Historically, there is a presence of a nearly silent voice, one that has been mistaken for being passive. Amidst the cacophony of political and social discourse, the Native American plight to affirm their sovereign rights and maintain a cultural identity has been a quiet under-recognized plight. Several hundred years of persevering through this plight has wreaked havoc on the native educational system as well as the academic performance and psychological well-being of Native American students. In the narrative of equity, other minority groups have taken center stage as native students fell further behind. In 2015, I traveled with the Native Indian Education Association (NIEA) across New Mexico, South Dakota, and Washington State to provide Common Core trainings like the one in Muckleshoot.

To read the entire article, click here.

Department of Education: Negotiated Rulemaking Committee; Negotiator Nominations

The Department of Education announces their intention to establish a negotiated rulemaking committee prior to publishing proposed regulations to implement part A of title I, Improving Basic Programs Operated by Local Educational Agencies, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The negotiating committee will include representatives of constituencies that are significantly affected by the topics proposed for negotiations, including Federal, State, and local education administrators, tribal leadership, parents and students, including historically underrepresented students, teachers, principals, other school leaders (including charter school leaders), paraprofessionals, members of State and local boards of education, the civil rights community, including representatives of students with disabilities, English learners, and other historically under-served students, and the business community.

DATES: Must be received on or before February 25, 2016

Submit your nominations for negotiators to:
James Butler, U.S.
Department of Education, 400 Maryland
Avenue SW., Room 3W246,
Washington, DC 20202

Telephone (202) 260–9737
or by email:OESE.ESSA.nominations@ed.gov.

For more information, click here.

Via Indian Country Today: 9 Ways the New Education Law Is a Win for Indian Country

An excerpt:

The Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 is a big win for Indian country, according to the National Indian Education Association. Executive Director Ahniwake Rose, Cherokee/Creek, and Federal Policy Associate Dimple Patel explained why in a January 27 webinar, “Understanding the Every Student Succeeds Act.”

ESSA, signed into law by President Obama on December 10, reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, a piece of civil rights legislation meant to protect the nation’s most vulnerable children. ESSA replaces the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act and shifts much of the responsibility for elementary and secondary education from the federal government to the states.

Tribal Consultation

For the first time ever, states and local educational agencies (LEAs) are required to engage in meaningful consultation with tribes or tribal organizations in the development of state plans for Title I grants. Further, LEAs must consult with tribes before making any decision that affects opportunities for American Indian/Alaska Native students in programs, services or activities funded by ESSA.

“Consultation means better decisions will be made for our students…. We believe that this provision alone is going to change the way our students are perceived and worked with in our school systems,” said Rose.

The key, she said, will be to help schools and LEAs understand what meaningful consultation is. NIEA will be working with the Department of Education and states to make sure consultation occurs at the earliest possible stage and prior to the development of any programs, initiatives or policy.

Native Language Immersion Programs

Funds awarded under a new Title VI (the new title for Indian Education) grant may be used to fund Native language immersion programs in public schools. The intent is to help Native peoples use, practice, maintain and revitalize their languages and cultures and to improve educational opportunities and student outcomes in AI/AN communities, said Rose. A Language Immersion Study will identify best practices.

To read the entire article, click here.