President Obama signs education bill

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Contact: Jared King
Communications Director
Navajo Nation Washington Office


President Obama signs education bill

WASHINGTON—President Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. The bill rewrites the nation’s largest federal K-12 education law known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB), which expired in 2007.  

Similar to NCLB, ESSA will continue existing annual testing for students in grades 3-8 in math, reading and science, and once in high school, however this legislation will allow more local control to determine school ratings and decide remedial measures.

The bill will now require testing data to be broken down by a number of subgroups, two of which includes race and economic status.

In regards to Indian Education, ESSA calls for a report on federal responses to Indian student suicides that have occurred during the past year in Indian Country and a study to evaluate education provided through Native American languages. After initially being accidentally omitted, the bill now allows Indian tribes, including the Navajo Nation to develop their own educational standards, assessments and accountability systems.