For every school to offer a safe and healthy learning environment for all students.
ESSA provides an opportunity for ISBE to secure educational equity for all Illinois children, ensuring success for students and schools. ESSA allows Illinois flexibility to try new approaches, including successful innovations implemented in districts and schools (ISBE, 2016). In addition, ESSA aligns with Illinois goals for education reform. Illinois identified five key reforms. The new law builds on key areas of progress in recent years made possible by Illinois educators, communities, parents, and students across the state (ISBE, 2016). ISBE coordinated a 2016 spring (Phase I), fall (Phase II), and winter (Phase III) ESSA listening tour, hosted by regional offices of education across the state. The purpose is twofold: (1) to provide information about the new law and guidance, and (2) to gain ideas, insights, suggestions, and recommendations from the field on the development of Illinois’ comprehensive ESSA plan for elementary and secondary education. In Year 5, MWCC will continue to work with ISBE to document decisions, synthesize discussions, and create summary reports at the end of each phase.
MWCC, in collaboration with ISBE, will support Phase II and Phase III ESSA listening tour meetings.