ByEmily Zuccaro, with Kathryn Whitmore
Kentucky was recently one of five states approved for a four-year extension of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act flexibility
The reauthorization of the ESEA occurred in 2002, known as No Child Left Behind. While states have been operating under NCLB, Congress has been unable to agree to terms for reauthorization in 2007. President Obama allowed states to apply for a waiver for relief from the terms of NCLB. The flexibility waiver requests a system for college and career-ready standards for all students, differentiated accountability systems, and reforms for effective classroom instruction and school leadership.
Kentucky was first granted the waiver in 2012, and has adhered to the guidelines and principles, leading to a waiver renewal up until the 2018-19 school year. The waiver allows Kentucky to use only one accountability system, flexibility with federal funding, and leading the way to aggressive education reform. Kentucky has celebrated successes in college and career readiness, as well as the improvement of consistently low performing schools, with many exiting Priority status.
Kentucky now looks to improve those low performing schools even further, as well as improving the accountability system, supporting English Language Learners and students with disabilities, and closing the achievement gap.