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Standards of Equity and Excellence: School Improvement Under ESSA



Standards of Equity and Excellence:
School Improvement Under ESSA

Susie Feliz, Vice President for Policy and Legislative Affairs, National Urban League
Phillip Lovell, Vice President for Policy and Government Relations, Alliance for Excellent Education
Robert Balfanz, Director, Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University

On February 11, 202 The National Urban League and the Alliance for Excellent Education held a Webinar on Implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act.  This webinar continued the discussion on how ESSA implementation is working – and not working – for historically underserved students. The National Urban League and the Alliance for Excellent Education hosted this webinar to discuss progress on school improvement.

ESSA requires states to identify schools with low-performing subgroups of students for support and improvement.  Only those schools that meet each state’s definitions for targeted and comprehensive support under ESSA are eligible to receive federal school improvement resources.  Susie Feliz shared the National Urban League’s findings from their report, Standards of Equity & Excellence: A Lens on ESSA State Plans, which evaluated state plans on whether they are meeting the law’s school identification requirements.  All states have now identified at least one cohort of schools, so the impact of state policy choices on which schools – and therefore students – will receive extra support is becoming clear.  Phillip Lovell shared new analysis on school identification in ten states.

We are also beginning to see how school improvement strategies are working for identified schools.  Dr. Robert Balfanz manages a network of states collaborating on transforming low-performing high schools.  Bob shared lessons his member states are learning about essential elements of successful school turnaround.

Supplemental Material

Please direct questions concerning the webinar to

If you are unable to watch the webinar live, an archived version will be available at 1–2 business days after the event airs.

The Alliance for Excellent Education (All4Ed) is a Washington, DC-based national policy, practice, and advocacy organization committed to improving educational outcomes—and lives—of students, with a focus on those in middle and high school. We embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion and specifically advocate on behalf of all students who are historically underserved or marginalized.

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Categories: Every Student Succeeds Act

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