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Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

Legal Information
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This section of PALawHelp.org has information and resources about the Every Student Succeeds Act (Formerly No Child Left Behind) in Pennsylvania.

Click on a resource category listed below to see information related to that category.
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Education Law Center

The Education Law Center is a non-profit legal advocacy and educational organization, dedicated to ensuring that all of Pennsylvania's children have access to a quality public education.

Opting Out of Standardized Tests

Information from the Education Law Center - Pennsylvania on when you can opt your child out of taking standardized testing. [PDF] (March 2014)

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) - U.S. Department of Education

Information from the U.S. Department of Education on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the successor to the No Child Left Behind Act.

The Every Student Succeeds Act - Pennsylvania's Consolidated State Plan

The Every Student Succeeds Act advances the promise of ensuring that all students – from pre-kindergarten to postsecondary, including low-income students, students of color, students with disabilities, English Learners, and other historically marginalized students – have access to a world-class education that prepares them for college, career, and life.

Pennsylvania's Consolidated State Plan

The Pennsylvania Department of Education offers its Consolidated State Plan, as approved by the United States Department of Education on January 16, 2018. Available in English and Spanish.

Assessment and Accountability

Information on the methods used by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to evaluate the success of educational initiatives under its jurisdiction.

Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA)

The annual Pennsylvania System School Assessment is a standards-based, criterion-referenced assessment which provides students, parents, educators and citizens with an understanding of student and school performance related to the attainment of proficiency of the academic standards.

Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA)

The Individuals with Disabilities Act of 2004 (IDEA) requires that States and Local Education Agencies (LEAs) ensure that all children with disabilities are included in all general state and district-wide assessment programs, including assessments used for purposes of satisfying the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA) was developed to meet the needs of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities who are not able to participate in the general assessment even with accommodations.

Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) Results

The Pennsylvania System of School Assessment, also known as PSSA, measures how well students have achieved in reading, mathematics, science and writing according to Pennsylvania's world-class academic standards. By using these standards, educators, parents and administrators can evaluate their students' strengths and weaknesses to increase students' achievement scores.

Key Elements of the School Performance Profile Scoring System

Information from the Pennsylvania Department of Education on what the School Performance Profile and its Academic Performance Score really are and how they are used to evaluate success in providing education.

School Improvement and Accountability

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provides each state with enhanced flexibility to designate and serve schools in need of support. ESSA provides states new flexibility to address conditions, strategies, and investments to ensure equitable opportunities for all students, and strike the appropriate balance between holding schools accountable for improving and providing extra tools and resources.

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