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CTQ joins call for return of ESEA to its roots

The Center for Teaching Quality (CTQ) has joined other national organizations in calling on Congress to focus Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorization on comprehensive supports for disadvantaged students. The organizations' letter emphasizes the following five principles:

  1. Disparities in opportunity, and the achievement gaps they cause, begin long before kindergarten, so a reauthorized ESEA must include funding and incentives for universal access to high-quality early childhood education and family supports. 

  2. Disparities in opportunity continue through K-12 school years, so ESEA must include provisions that help states, districts, and schools narrow those gaps through a supports-based approach. This includes funding and incentives for states, districts, and schools to provide nutrition, health, wellness, counseling/guidance, and mental and emotional health supports. 

  3. Increased focus in recent years on Extended Learning Time has drawn much-needed attention to the large gaps that open up in the hours before and after school and over summers as a result of disparities in the kinds of enriching out-of-school opportunities wealthier students enjoy. A reauthorized ESEA must ensure sufficient quality time for all students to learn in creative, engaging ways while protecting teachers’ time to plan, prepare, and collaborate. 

  4. With a large and growing proportion of US children facing significant barriers to their education outside the classroom, effective accountability measures must be structured, aligned, and implemented in a way that leverages all the tools needed to improve their odds of success. Given the substantial role played by outside-of-school factors, failing to make accountability multi-dimensional is inadequate to ensure equity because it presents a distorted picture of what contributes to student achievement.

  5. Assessments can and should play important roles, but they should be designed and implemented to support the improvement of instruction and education, and their misuse and abuse must be stopped. 

Other signees include AASAAnnenberg Institute for School ReformBroader Bolder Approach to EducationFirst FocusNational Opportunity to Learn Campaign, and National Superintendents Roundtable.  

 

Individuals can join in urging Congress to focus reauthorization on these principles