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Every Student Succeed Act (ESSA) from the Louisiana Department of Education

BATON ROUGE, La. - The Louisiana Department of Education released today a draft framework outlining a sample, comprehensive plan to comply with the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Building on input from more than 200 organizations and over 1,000 individuals on how to improve education in Louisiana, the draft framework is meant to further the public comment process, marking another step in the yearlong process of developing Louisiana's full ESSA plan.

The draft framework includes ideas gleaned from public comment and from analysis of statewide student performance. Rather than focusing on one policy or a list of isolated policies, the draft framework knits together the following elements:

  • Performance targets in the state accountability system for schools and districts
  • Policies and supports from the state for school and district improvement
  • Financial resources to support school and district plans to meet state targets

Among the most critical elements in draft framework are potential, notable enhancements to current practice in Louisiana:

  • Long-term, statewide performance goals for literacy, numeracy, high school graduation rate, average ACT score, and college matriculation rate
  • Inclusion of a calculation of individual, annual student progress, for all students, no matter their performance levels, in every school's performance score
  • Dramatic reduction in high school testing through moving from two testing series to one Focus on identifying learning needs, such as disabilities or giftedness, early in elementary schools
  • Proposals for expanding access to arts, foreign language, diverse career pathways, and inclusive behavioral interventions
  • Recruitment of top Louisiana-based and nationwide organizations to support low-performing schools to improve
  • Creation of "professional pathways" for educators, from their college training as teacher residents through leading roles such as teacher leader, teacher mentor, and school leader