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California Department of Education
Official Letter
California Department of Education
Official Letter
March 26, 2020


Public Comment Period for California's Assessment and Accountability Waiver Request

On March 26, 2020, the California State Board of Education and the California Department of Education (CDE), under Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Section 8401(b), requested a waiver to the U.S. Department of Education (ED) for the 2019–2020 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

Summary of the Issue

On March 18, 2020, Governor Newsom issued Executive Order N-30-20 announcing California’s intent to pursue a federal waiver of testing requirements. In this Executive Order, Governor Newsom acknowledged that California’s schools were currently in the middle of the testing window and therefore it was necessary to waive state requirements to administer annual statewide assessments in order to allow local educational agencies (LEAs) to take appropriate actions to mitigate the COVID-19 threat.

The State will hold a concurrent public comment period for all stakeholders and LEAs with the submission and review of our application through April 15, 2020. Any comments or questions should be e-mailed to or by mail to the California Department of Education, Government Affairs Division, 1430 N Street, Suite 5602, Sacramento, CA 95814-5901.

A copy of the Accountability and Assessment Waiver Request letter that was sent to ED and the ESEA Waiver Request is located on the CDE’s Every Student Succeeds Act web page under the sub-header “Waiver Requests”.



Last Reviewed: Monday, January 30, 2023

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