Implementing The Every Student Succeeds Act

The “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA) was signed into law December 10, 2015 to put an end to the No Child Left Behind Act—onerous federal policy that has dogged schools for over a decade. The rewrite of the law was accomplished through a bipartisan legislative process – a process that has been increasingly rare in Washington. Principals can review a report prepared by NAESP that highlights major sections of the new law important for school leaders.

Below you can find up to date information on the process to implement ESSA and resources to guide your advocacy.

New: Principals ESSA Action Plan

Principals Action Plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act: Providing All Students with a Well-Rounded and Complete EducationPrincipals can use this interactive tool to engage with state and district leaders as they prepare to submit their ESSA consolidated plans and work to implement the new law.


Jump to:
ESSA BackgroundESSA Guidance and Related Materials
Webinars | Title I & II Resources | Articles
Public Comments, Rulemaking Efforts | ED Regulatory Timeline


ESSA Background


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ESSA Guidance and Related Materials

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Guidance and Related Materials—as of Friday, September 30, 2016:

  1. Title I Schoolwide
  2. Title IV - Well-Rounded
  3. Foster Care
  4. Homeless Students
  5. Students with Disabilities and ADHD
  6. Disproportionality
  7. Evidence-Base
  8. English Learners
  9. Tribal Consultation
  10. Title II, Part A - Supporting Educators
  11. STEM Education
  12. ESSA Transition Technical Assistance and Resources
  13. Stakeholder Engagement


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Webinars: “Nuts & Bolts of ESSA” Series


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Title I Resources & Information:


Title II Resources & Information:


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Public Comments, Rulemaking Efforts

The U.S. Department of Education has released for public comment a set of proposed regulations to give states clarity in rethinking their accountability, data reporting, and consolidated state plans. This marks an important step along the path to implementing the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in a way that allows the law to live up to its potential as a tool for enhancing educational excellence and equity.

The Department is interested in hearing from all stakeholders, including States, and looks forward to receiving comments during the public comment period over the next 60 days (until August 1).

The proposed regulations are currently being analyzed by NAESP with data collection efforts underway. In the meantime, you may view the proposed regulations, a factsheet, a chart comparing these proposed regulations to No Child Left Behind (NCLB), and the Department’s press release on the ESSA resources webpage. There will also be blog posts outlining the ED’s proposal on their Homeroom Blog and Medium.


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US Department of Education Regulatory Process Timeline

  • March-April, 2016
    Negotiated rulemaking committee established for Title I issues, draft papers and session materials. (Click here for information on the Negotiated Rulemaking Session)
  • January 21, 2016
    Request for Information comments are due to ED. NAESP submitted comments on behalf of principals nationwide and in partnership with NASSP. Comments are public record and NAESP will post here when available.
  • January 11, 2016 (DC) and January 19, 2016 (LA)
    ED hosts two public meetings in Washington, DC and Los Angeles, CA to solicit comments in conjunction with the RFI.
  • December 22, 2015
    Request for Information and Notice of Meetings Published in the Federal Registrar to solicit advice and recommendations from interested parties prior to publishing proposed regulations on implementing Title I of ESSA.
  • December 18, 2015
    ED publishes a Dear Colleague Letter on the transition to ESSA and hosts subsequent webinars on the letter. The Dear Colleague letter addresses three main topics:
    • Title I Assessment Peer Review
    • AMOs and AMAOs specifically cancelling the AMOs and AMAO ED approval process as prescribed in the new law
    • General ESEA flexibility update noting for states that the waiver process continues through August 1, 2016
  • December 10, 2015
    The Every Student Succeeds Act is signed into law by President Obama at the White House. The White House had previously published a Fact Sheet on the law. ED launches a website dedicated to ESSA.


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