The State Board of Education approved Missouri’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidated State Plan today. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) began work on the plan more than a year and a half ago, holding nine regional meetings with the public on what matters most in the education of our children. More than 1,200 people attended those events and offered valuable feedback. The process culminated in a draft ESSA plan posted for a 30-day comment period from June 15 through July 15, 2017. Comments came from teachers, school administrators, counselors, librarians, civil rights organizations, postsecondary institutions, advocacy organizations and other stakeholders. DESE received 174 comments during that time and made changes to the submission based on the feedback. DESE also shared the plan with the governor on August 3 for a 30-day review.
“We appreciate the people who took the time to give meaningful, thoughtful feedback on how we should support our teachers and our struggling schools,” said Dr. Chris Neale, assistant commissioner in the Office of Quality Schools. “Our goal in Missouri is to ensure that every child has an opportunity for success, especially our most vulnerable students.”
Other highlights of the plan include
- Providing equitable access to excellent educators by transforming teacher and school leader support.
- Improving educational equity by increasing access to advanced coursework in schools where it has not been available.
- Leveling the playing field for rural and low-income schools by offering grants to supplement title programs.
- Improving graduation rates.
- Improving student performance in English language arts, math and science.
DESE will submit the plan to the U.S. Department of Education by September 18, 2017.