President Obama created big education news in the other Washington when he signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) into law earlier this month. The ESSA replaces the decade old No Child Left Behind Act with a state-focused education agenda designed to allow states to tailor education infrastructure to the needs of local students.
Washington STEM thanks Washington Senator Patty Murray for her leadership and the entire Washington delegation for their support of the ESSA. Throughout the development of ESSA, Washington STEM partnered with the national STEM Education Coalition (see the coalition letter of support) to push for inclusion of pro-STEM education provisions in the Every Student Succeeds Act.
We are pleased to note that the law calls for states to maintain strong math and science standards. ESSA also includes STEM and computer science in the “core academics” definition and expands state certification and professional development for STEM teachers. The STEM Education Coalition performed a comprehensive analysis of the STEM components of ESSA available here.
Now the ESSA comes to the states. We know there will be lots of work to do to implement the law so it offers great education and STEM opportunities for Washington’s students. We look forward to working with OSPI, the State Legislature, the State Board of Education, and school districts on rolling out the ESSA the right way.