Betsy DeVos Approves 11 States' Education Plans

January 18, 2018

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos approved 11 state ESSA plans on Tuesday: Arkansas, Maryland, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, South Dakota, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

Here are some highlights of each plan, as submitted for approval:

Arkansas: The state proposed to assign schools letter grade on an A through F scale in the ESSA plan it submitted to the department. In its feedback to the state, the department told Arkansas it needed to do a better job of explaining its indicator of school quality or student success.

Maryland: Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, refused to sign the state's plan because he felt it wasn't strong on enough on accountablity. Hogan's allies warned that the department might not approve the plan. State law prohibits Maryland's education department from taking certain dramatic steps to turnaround low-performing schools. The state is planning to use chronic absenteeism, school climate, and access to a well-rounded curriculum as its school quality indicators.

Missouri: The state is planning to use attendance as its indicator of school quality or student success. In its feedback letter from the department, Missouri was dinged for its plans to identify and help districts fix struggling schools.

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