July-August-September 2016

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The Rollout of ESSA: Key Updates
 
The NDDPI, in conjunction with our State ESSA Planning Committee, is moving forward in the development and rollout of our state ESSA plan. We are very fortunate this time to have a transition year in order to connect with stakeholder groups and have time to adequately plan. When No Child Left Behind (NCLB) was enacted in January 2002, states had to implement the new law in July of that year. In an effort to keep school personnel and the public apprised of the work being done, we will regularly report out on the status of the new law.
 
Please note the following key ESSA updates:
  • ESSA Planning Committee – Superintendent Baesler has formed an ESSA Planning Committee, representing a multitude of stakeholder groups. The State ESSA Planning Committee will convene over the next seven months to prepare the state’s application for a comprehensive plan. To date, the committee has met three times to review essential components of a state accountability plan. This committee represents a wide array of stakeholders and their role in advocating for their peers is critical.
     
  • ESSA State Plan Template – The U.S. Department of Education (USDE) has provided states with a template outlining information that needs to be included in the state ESSA plan. The template is available on our ESSA website. The NDDPI is committed to sharing information with the public and being transparent throughout the ESSA implementation and rollout of the new law. As the plan begins to be developed, we will post continuous updates on our website.
     
  • New ESSA Provisions – Under the ESSA law, there are numerous new provisions. Three new components, in particular, that are being seen as positive new additions include:
     
    • Use of school dashboard – Under ESSA, AYP reports are gone and can be replaced with a dashboard or other reporting format for all schools which allows multiple factors to be used when summarizing a school’s measure of quality.
    • At least one “additional” indicator of school quality – ESSA requires states to use at least one additional “indicator of school quality or student success” that “allows for meaningful differentiation in school performance.”
    •  New Title IV Part A Grant – ESSA includes a new block grant program (under Title IV Part A) called Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants. This new program will be available to districts in the 2017-2018 school year. The program provides funding for three broad areas:
       
      • Providing students with a well-rounded education (e.g., STEM, Advanced Coursework, Civics, Arts)
      • Supporting safe and healthy students (e.g., mental health, drug prevention, violence and bullying)
      • Supporting the effective use of technology (e.g., technology, professional development, equipment of licenses)
         
  • New NDDPI Vision under ESSA – The NDDPI has created a new vision as part of the ESSA planning process. This new vision was shared for the first time at our annual School Administrators Conference and reads: “All students will graduate choice ready with the knowledge, skills, and disposition to be successful in whatever they choose to do, whether they pursue a post-secondary degree, enroll in a technical college, enter the workforce, or join the military”. The NDDPI continues to refine the vision and, once final, will be embedded in our work going forward.
 
All ESSA related information will be available on our ESSA website. If you have questions, please communicate with your contact person in the Division of Student Support & Innovation or contact Laurie Matzke at (701) 328-2284.