Curious about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), a.k.a. the new education law in the U.S.? Congress passed and President Obama signed the new law last week, which rolls back many core tenets of No Child Left Behind, and significantly changes the federal government’s role in education accountability.
This new law is directly relevant to those working on education issues across sectors, as well as to anyone who has (or will have) kids in U.S. public schools. For an overview of ESSA check out this recent EdWeek article; we also recommend this explanation of how ESSA compares and contrasts with NCLB.
For some more pointed perspectives, here’s a right-of-center take from Rick Hess that praises the return of accountability to the state level. For a left-of-center viewpoint, Andy Rotherham argues that state-based accountability is a significant threat to educational equity.
While the bulk of ESSA commentary has focused on accountability, other aspects of the law—for instance, more emphasis on early childhood and personalized learning—will directly influence nonprofits, foundations, and other organizations working on education.
Given that a law like this only comes around every decade, we at FSG will be discussing the implications of ESSA on our education work and on the field as a whole.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on ESSA and how it affects your work in the comments below.