Pennsylvania's ESSA plan, developed by Gov. Tom Wolf's administration with input from PSEA, relies on multiple measures to track school quality, emphasizing both proficiency and growth on state standardized tests as well as other factors such as graduation rates, growth in English language learner proficiency, chronic absenteeism, and career readiness.
The plan also creates programs to address teacher recruitment and preparation as well as school and student programs emphasizing STEM, career planning, safe school environments, and access to advanced coursework.
PSEA is pleased that the Wolf administration included educators in the development of this plan. ESSA workgroups convened by the state Department of Education included 15 PSEA members and staff as part of a diverse cross section of stakeholders.
The approved plan takes an important step in the right direction for our students and our members. Moving to multiple measures of school success shifts the focus to students and uses standardized tests in a more balanced way. It also ensures the public sees a broad spectrum of information on how a school is performing.