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Feedback Wanted on ESSA

June 2, 2016

Please note: This article was originally published on 6/2/2016. Information and/or dates from past events may be not be relevant for the current school year.

In Tennessee, we have laid a firm foundation for our students’ future by raising standards to a more rigorous level that will prepare them for college and careers; establishing fully aligned assessments to ensure all of our students are developing problem-solving and critical thinking skills; and by using evaluation and accountability systems based on multiple factors. The new federal education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), builds on this work by reaffirming the importance of standards, assessment, and accountability and through empowering states to make decisions for our students.

In response, Commissioner Candice McQueen and senior Education Department leaders have launched a statewide listening tour to gather input from educators, key advocates, parents, students, and the public to determine how to implement particular components of the new law. The feedback will inform a Tennessee-specific ESSA plan that will guide the department’s work over the coming years and help the department capitalize on the new law’s empowerment of local leadership. After the first draft – which will be informed by this stakeholder input – is created this fall, the department will again seek feedback on the draft plan before developing the final version.

You can provide your input on the questions we are asking in the hyperlinked form, which will be available until Sept. 1, 2016. If you have questions about the existing state policies in these areas and what ESSA requires, please visit this page . If you choose to provide feedback, you do not need to respond to every question.  The form may be accessed at http://www.tn.gov/education/topic/essa-feedback-form

Please note that unless you decline for your feedback to publicly attributed to you, the department may use your comments in various forums, including on social media, at in-person meetings with stakeholders, and in the ESSA report. Given the high volume of feedback we anticipate receiving, we have limited responses to each question to 500 characters. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with us.