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Highlights from Hunt Institute’s “Opportunities and Responsibilities: A First Look at ESSA” Conference

By Nazanin Mohajeri-Nelson, Director, Data, Program Evaluation, and Reporting, Federal Programs
Wednesday, March 30, 2016 - 10:31am

State legislators, board of education members, and other educational leaders from 14 states gathered in Atlanta, Georgia on February 26th and 27th to gain information from the U.S. Department of Education, the National Conference of State Legislatures, National Association of State Boards of Education, Data Quality Campaign, Education Trust, Council of Chief State School Officers, Teach Plus, North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Thomas B. Fordham Institute and educators including two teachers and one superintendent.  The conference was hosted by The Hunt Institute.

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And on the lighter side…..

By Dave Schneiderman, Supervisor, Office of Grants Fiscal
Friday, March 4, 2016 - 4:23pm

I, like many people in my position, spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s reading the new ESSA Law.  It was 391 pages of light and easy reading until I came upon page 338.  Being so far into the new law, my mind was a bit numb and I did not stop until 3 pages later.  I had to back up to make sure what I read wasn’t a hallucination.  But there it was, page 338, SEC. 9206, right between “Report on Department Actions to Address Office of Inspector General Reports” and “Education Flexibility Partnership Act of 1999 Reauthorization”; “Posthumous Pardon.”

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Briefing on ESSA: West Comprehensive Center at WestEd

By Richard Crandall, Commissioner of Education
Monday, February 29, 2016 - 8:39am

Last Friday, February 26, six of us from CDE had the chance to join the leadership teams from the Departments of Ed in Utah, New Mexico, Nevada and Arizona for a deep dive into the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). It was a one-day crash course looking at accountability, teacher qualifications, use of funds, and flexibility. I came away with a much clearer understanding of our responsibilities over the next 18 months, but more importantly, I came away with tremendous excitement about what we can accomplish as a state.

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New FAQs: Transitions to ESSA

By Patrick Chapman, Executive Director, Federal Programs
Friday, February 26, 2016 - 2:56pm

The U.S. Department of Education released a set of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)  frequently asked questions (FAQs) based on questions received from states and others.

The Department prepared these FAQs (ESSA FAQ document) to support states and LEAs in understanding expectations during the transition to full implementation of the ESSA, and will continue to add to these FAQs over the coming months.  

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Concurrent Enrollment Programs

By Misti Ruthven, Director of Postsecondary Readiness
Friday, February 19, 2016 - 9:29am

Did you know that ESSA permits the use of certain Federal funds to operate concurrent enrollment programs? Specifically, to address the needs of low-achieving secondary school students and those at risk of not meeting Colorado academic standards. CDE is working with the U.S. Department of Education to clarify these details and will add to concurrent enrollment guidance soon.

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NCLB to ESSA Transition Guidance from USDE

By Alyssa Pearson, Interim Associate Commissioner
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 - 8:10am

The U.S. Department of Education has shared information with states around the transition to the Every Student Succeeds Act. These two communications provide some initial information around requirements for the transition. The U.S. Department of Education will share additional information in the future, and that will be communicated through this blog and be available on CDE's ESSA page.

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A brief overview of the new law

By Alyssa Pearson, Interim Associate Commissioner
Monday, February 8, 2016 - 9:30am

On the day ESSA passed in December, CDE staff provided a brief overview of the new law to the State Board of Education. Take a look at the highlights of the changes that will affect Colorado’s assessment and accountability systems. Since this presentation was given, we’ve learned that most likely, the U.S. Department of Education won’t issue rules until October 2016 and state plans may not be due until summer 2017.

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