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What is ESSA?

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is a law administered by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) that requires all states to develop educational accountability measurements for all public K-12 schools nationally. ESSA replaced the previous No Child Left Behind Act and required all 50 states and the District of Columbia to create state plans to measure individual schools’ success at preparing students for college and/or careers. In the District, that means developing an accountability system for DC public and charter schools that demonstrates how well schools are performing, using academic performance and other factors.

What information is required for all state ESSA plans?

  • Public K-12 schools must document academic achievement, as measured by state standardized test scores in English and math;
  • Elementary and middle school ratings must indicate how they measure growth, both overall and for specific groups of students;
  • High schools must publish their progress toward proficiency and four-year graduation rates.

Research Committee2020-12-16 Interim Research Committee Report Cover.png

At the March 2019 public meeting, Board members passed SR19-5, which established that the State Board will focus its research efforts on six items, one of them being to review the STAR Framework. Since being formally established by SR19-11, this committee examines and reviews how school quality is measured under the District’s STAR Framework, alternative ideas and options for such measurement, and the strengths and weaknesses of these measures. Learn more about Committee Assignments here.

At the December 16, 2020 public meeting, State Board representatives voted to approve an interim report of the Research Committee, primarily directed to the new members of the State Board joining in January 2021. This report attempts to assemble the most central data, testimony, concerns, options, and pro/con arguments considered by the Research Committee. But as an interim report, the concerns and arguments made below must therefore be considered “interim.” Some of the arguments made in this report may be found wanting as all State Board members learn more and as new State Board members and the public weigh in. Moreover, the discussions summarized are grist for ultimate judgments; as the State Board moves towards recommendations for revisions to the STAR Framework, different members, as well as the public, will weigh different values more or less heavily in considering the inherent trade-offs of different options. The State Board expects to continue this discussion on the STAR Framework with Board members, experts, and members of the general public. Read the full report here and find the full Appendix here.


ESSA Task Force

List of Members: ESSA Task Force
Final Report - June 19, 2019

Members from the task force presented a final report to the State Board at the June 2019 public meeting. The report contains an overview of task force activities and outlines recommendations from each of the task force’s three committees.

Academic Equity Committee Recommendations

  • Support additional targeted research to ensure equitable outcomes
  • Encourage the Council to memorialize, via legislation, a plan to adequately fund schools within three years, as there is limited funding available to improve comprehensive support schools
  • Call on the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education (DME) to draft a comprehensive “equity action plan” that includes analysis of all educational inputs and outcomes to reduce gaps in academic rigor, growth, and achievement between different student groups

Leading for Equity Committee Recommendations

  • Offer additional support to lower-rated schools not already eligible for support
  • Promote partnerships with external organizations to build capacity and enhance the capabilities of school leadership
  • Support rigorous research that identifies cost-effective policies and programs
  • Provide additional targeted technical assistance to LEAs and schools regarding creative uses of at-risk and other federal resources 

School Resources and Funding Equity Committee Recommendations

  • Work to support best practices and more standardized implementation with respect to how school funding and expenses are reported to the public 
  • Identify high-leverage budget line items tied to equitable outcomes
  • Publicly report additional budget data on the DC School Report Card

State Board members will review the task force report and recommendations to determine further action by SBOE.

SBOE ESSA Task Force Meeting Information

May 15, 2019
Presentation Slides
April 9, 2019
Presentation Slides | Watch the Replay
March 12, 2019
Presentation Slides | Watch the Replay
February 12, 2019
MinutesPresentation SlidesWatch the Replay
January 8, 2019
Minutes | Presentation Slides | Watch the Replay

December 11, 2018
MinutesPresentation Slides  | Watch the Replay
November 13, 2018
MinutesPresentation Slides | Watch the Replay
October 9, 2018
MinutesPresentation Slides | Watch the Replay
September 11, 2018 
Minutes | Presentation Slides | Watch the Replay
June 5, 2018
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay
May 1, 2018
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay
April 3, 2018
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay
March 6, 2018 
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay
February 6, 2018 
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay
January 9, 2018 
Minutes |  OSSE Report Card Content Proposal | Watch the Replay

December 5, 2017
Minutes |  Presentation MaterialsWatch the Replay
November 7, 2017 
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay | Updated Overview | Required Report Card Elements
October 3, 2017 
MinutesPresentation Materials | Watch the Replay 
September 5, 2017 
Minutes  | Presentation Materials | Watch the Replay
August 22, 2017 
MinutesPresentation Slides | Watch the Replay