Superintendent-elect Reykdal To Delay Submission of Federal Education Plan
OLYMPIA —January 10, 2017 — Washington state is delaying submission of the education plan required as part of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), State Superintendent-elect Chris Reykdal announced today.
The document, known as the state’s Consolidated Plan, will be submitted on September 18, 2017.
Reykdal said that he wanted more time to engage all state partners in the plan. “The Legislature begins this week,” he said, “and many members are new. I want to make sure that everyone – legislators as well as the general public – has a chance to weigh in on a plan that could guide education policy in our state for many years.”
Reykdal noted that although federal spending makes up only about 8 percent of total education funding, the Department of Education consistently writes rules that seek too much control over K-12 education, control that should rest with states.
“I was an outspoken critic of many of the Obama Administration’s education policies,” Reykdal said, “and specifically former Education Secretary Arne Duncan. I will remain skeptical of the new administration until we see demonstrated evidence that they are committed to state and local control. I hope the delay in our submission will give me that evidence.”
The Consolidated Plan addresses gaps in the education system, and works to promote equitable access and opportunity for all Washington students, particularly low-income students who may slip through the cracks.
ESSA builds on key themes of the bill it replaces, the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, while allowing states more say in how to address struggling schools. While NCLB brought focus to education gaps across the nation, the bill was punitive towards schools that weren’t succeeding. ESSA allows states to dictate what measures will be taken, working to improve schools by offering professional development opportunities, teacher recruitment and retention incentives, and more.
The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K–12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Chris Reykdal, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine educational service districts to administer basic education programs and improve student achievement on behalf of more than one million public school students.
OSPI provides equal access to all programs and services without discrimination based on sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Questions and complaints of alleged discrimination should be directed to the Equity and Civil Rights Director at (360) 725-6162 or P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200.
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