Every Student Succeeds ActInformation regarding California's plan to implement the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).
On December 10, 2015, President Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), reauthorizing the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and replacing the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), the 2001 reauthorization of ESEA.
Information regarding the ESSA and the development of California's plan to implement the new federal education act is provided below. New information and guidance will be added as it becomes available. If you would like to be notified when new information is available, please join the California Department of Education (CDE) ESSA listserv by sending a blank e-mail message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
California's ESSA State Plan (DOCX) Approved by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) December 4, 2020
- Overview of the Amendments to California's ESSA State Plan (DOCX; Posted 20-Dec-2019)
- Approval of the Amendments to the State Plan from ED (PDF)
For previous versions of the State Plan, associated drafts, and other information relevant to development of the State Plan, please visit the ESSA Initial State Plan Development web page.
Communication with the U.S. Department of Education Regarding General Waiver on Statewide Assessments
On April 2, 2021, the CDE and the California State Board of Education (SBE) sent a letter to ED to confirm a conversation between the CDE, SBE, and ED in which California affirmed that we would continue to offer state summative assessments. In response, ED staff indicated that California would not need to submit a general assessment waiver.
- CDE Letter to ED on Statewide Assessments (Posted 05-Apr-2021)
Waiver for Accountability, School Identification, and Reporting Requirements for School Year 2020–21
On February 22, 2021, ED invited states to request a waiver for the 2020-2021 school year of accountability, school identification, and related reporting requirements in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA). ED published an optional state waiver template on March 8, 2021.
On April 2, 2021, the CDE and SBE, submitted the waiver template for accountability, school identification, and related reporting requirements pursuant to section 8401 of the ESEA.
ED provided California with formal approval for this waiver on April 6, 2021.
- ED Waiver Request Template for Accountability, School Identification, and Related Reporting Requirements for 2020–21 School Year (PDF; Posted 12-Apr-2021)
- CDE Letter to ED on Accountability, School Identification, and Related Reporting Requirements Waiver (Posted 12-Apr-2021)
- ED Accountability, School Identification, and Related Reporting Requirements Waiver Approval
(PDF; Posted 12-Apr-2021)
COVID-19 Federal Funding Flexibility Waiver
On April 3, 2020, ED invited states to apply for a Federal Funding Flexibility Waiver as a part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
Additionally, on December 2020, ED invited states to request a similar waiver under the ESEA section 8401(b) for the 2020–21 school year and fiscal year (FY) 2020 Title IV, Part A funds.
More information about these waivers can be found on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Federal Funding Flexibility web page.
COVID-19 Assessment and Accountability Waiver
On March 26, 2020, the California SBE and the CDE, under ESEA Section 8401(b), requested a waiver to ED for the 2019–20 school year of the following sections:
- Assessment requirements in section 1111(b)(2);
- Accountability and school identification requirements in sections 1111(c)(4) and 1111(d)(2)(C)-(D); and
- Reporting requirements related to assessments and accountability in section 1111(h) as enumerated in the template
A public comment period is open through April 15, 2020, for interested parties and members of the public to submit comments or questions concerning this Waiver request. Please submit comments or questions by email to ESSA@cde.ca.gov or by mail to the California Department of Education, Government Affairs Division, 1430 N Street, Suite 5602, Sacramento, CA 95814-5901.
- Accountability and Assessment Waiver Request Letter (Posted 26-Mar-2020)
- California 20-0077 ESEA Waiver Request Template (PDF; Posted 26-Mar-2020)
- Assessment and Accountability Waiver Request Communication (Posted 01-Apr-2020)
- U.S. Department of Education Assessment and Accountability Approval (PDF; Posted 01-Apr-2020)
English Learner Progress Indicator Waiver
The California State Board of Education directed the CDE to submit a waiver request to the U.S. Department of Education related to the English Learner Progress Indicator. The CDE submitted the waiver request on May 16, 2018.
- State Board of Education Agenda Items Related to ESSA
- Evidence-Based Interventions Under the ESSA
- ESSA 2016–17 School Year Transition Plan
- California Practitioners Advisory Group
- State Plan Historical Correspondence
- ED Transitioning to the ESSA Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (PDF; Posted 18-Jan-2017)
- Accountability FAQs (PDF)
- Resource Guide: Accountability for English Learners Under the ESSA (PDF)
- State and Local Report Cards Guidance (PDF)
- High School Graduation Rate Guidance (PDF)
- Assessment Use of Funds Guidance (PDF)
- Fiscal Changes and Equitable Services Requirements Guidance (PDF)
- Title IV, Part A, Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants Guidance (PDF)
- Early Learning Guidance (PDF)
- Schoolwide Guidance (PDF)
- Guidance for Title II, Part A: Building Systems of Support for Excellent Teaching and Leading (PDF)
- Title III Guidance - English Learners (PDF)
- Evidence Guidance (PDF)
- Homeless Student Guidance (PDF)
- Foster Care Guidance (PDF)
Assessment Final Regulations
- Title I, Part A Assessment Regulations (PDF)
- Title I, Part B Innovative Assessment Pilot Regulations (PDF)
- Fact Sheet for Title I, Part A and Part B Regulations (PDF)
- State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) and SBE President Joint Response to Proposed Assessment Regulations (Dated 09-Sep-2016)
Accountability, State Plans, and Data Reporting Regulations (PDF; Dated 28-Nov-2016)
- Accountability Regulations Fact Sheet (PDF)
- Timeline for identification of schools for support and improvement (PDF)
- SSPI and SBE President Joint Response to Proposed Accountability Regulations (Dated 03-Aug-2016)
Letters from ED
All letters from ED related to the development of the State Plan can be found on the ESSA Initial State Plan Development web page.