South Dakota Plans to Follow New National K-12 Law

  1. What is the law:

    It is the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), and its a substitute for the “No Child Left Behind” law for schools. SDE reauthorized the 50-year-old Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the main K-12 law of the nation.

  2. What does the ESSA do:  

    It informs states on how to hold schools accountable for every student’s achievement. In South Dakota, the ESSA won’t bring dramatic differences because the state had received a rejection for “No Child Left Behind requirements.” already.

  3. When does it go into effect:  

    The law will take full effect during the 2017-18 school year already signed by former President Barack Obama in December 2015. You’ll notice the first set of school accountability data under the ESSA by the end of their school report cards in 2018. We are positive that the ESSA will be with us for a long while just as the No child left behind did.

  4. Overall philosophy:  

    It will focus on college and career preparedness as its long-term goals center on assisting all students to get the necessary skills required for college entry and join the workforce. Schools are therefore geared up to search for creative ways to provide them with resources to pursue career interests and meet students where they are.

  5. School accountability:  

    ESSA plan for South Dakota essentially consolidates information that schools collect into one place. Schools gain “points” annually on their report card based on how they perform on state assessments, how English language learners conduct, high school completion rates, school attendance rates, and graduation rates.


Other students: Progress among three new student subgroups is also now required to track progress. The homeless students, students with a member of the military in their immediate family, and students in foster care.


Derek Turner