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The Delaware Department of Education will host a second round of community conversations in December to collect public input on the first draft of the state’s plan under the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

In December 2015, Congress reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), the main federal law governing public education. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) replaces the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).  As part of NCLB, Delaware is one of the 43 states operating under ESEA Flexibility.

ESSA gives states more flexibility and provides more state and local control over the accountability process. ESSA implementation will begin during the 2017-18 school year. The 2016-17 school year provides the opportunity to consult with stakeholders, develop Delaware’s plan, and submit the plan to the U.S. Department of Education for approval.

Information on the second-round sessions and corresponding registration links are below:

·         6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, December 1, John Collette Education Resource Center, 35 Commerce Way, Suite 1, Dover
·         6 to 8 p.m., Thursday December 8, Newark Charter School, 2001 Patriot Way, Newark

Two Sessions for Spanish-speaking members

·         6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, December 14, North Georgetown Elementary School, 664 N. Bedford St., Georgetown

·         6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, December 20, Latin American Community Center, 403 N. Van Buren St., Wilmington

In addition to the larger community conversations, department leaders are continuing to collect input through a series of stakeholder consultation meetings. A Governor’s advisory committee and discussion groups on the major aspects of the plan also will be convened in the coming months. One discussion group is focusing on technical topics related to measures of school success and reporting. The second group is focusing on provisions for student and school supports. The discussion groups provide information to the advisory group.

Following the second round of conversations, the department will release a second draft of the plan by December 31. Additional comments will be taken through February. The state will submit its plan to the U.S. Department of Education for approval by March 6.

Feedback also can be submitted to ESSAStatePlan@doe.k12.de.us.

Find more information on the department’s ESSA web site (http://www.doe.12.de.us/ESSA).

Helpful links and more information from the NDSC  and The Advocacy Institute on ESSA:

ESSA FAQ and IEP Tips

Sample Comments on State ESSA Plan

ESSA State Plan Advocacy Guide

NDSC and AI analysis of DE draft ESSA plan 11-25-16