Make Your Voice Heard! #ESSA Public Input Needed at the SBOE Nov 16 Public Meeting

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Washington, DC - The DC State Board of Education (SBOE) will hold its monthly public meeting on November 16, 2016 and wants to hear the community’s thoughts on how schools will be graded next year. The meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. in the Old Council Chambers at 441 4th Street, NW.

The SBOE is collecting feedback on OSSE’s initial strawman of how schools will be held accountable under Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Last week, the SBOE responded to this strawman with recommendations for changes

At our November 16 public meeting, we would like to continue our work on ESSA by hearing from members of the community on three areas related to ESSA.

The Weight of Testing:  Our current system overwhelmingly emphasizes test results. We are hearing that this focus on testing has harmful effects on our schools. The OSSE discussion draft suggests the new total test weight to be 80%; the SBOE response memo suggests it should be much lower. We need to hear from parents, students, and organizations on how it has affected their schools and what they think the weight on testing should be.

The Weight of Growth in Relation to Proficiency:  Rather than only holding schools accountable for reaching specific proficiency levels, ESSA offers the opportunity for DC to reward schools for the progress students achieve each year. We must determine the appropriate balance between students meeting college and career readiness standards and their educational growth. We need to hear from parents, students and organizations on what the appropriate balance would be

Safety, Engagement and Environment Indicators: The SBOE believes that it is important for all students, teachers and parents to feel welcome in their schools. This relates to many factors including facilities, school discipline, attendance, bullying, parent engagement, teacher turnover, student reenrollment, etc. We need to hear from parents, students and organizations on what factors we should be looking at when assessing our schools.

This meeting of the SBOE is open to testimony from interested parties including students, parents, teachers, school leaders, organizations and residents. If you would like to testify, please email us at [email protected] by the close of business on November 15.

The State Board of Education provides policy leadership, support, advocacy, and oversight of public education to ensure that every student is valued and learns the skills and knowledge necessary to become informed, competent, and contributing global citizens. More information about the SBOE can be found at