Every Student Succeeds Policy
Policies are enacted to help federal, state, and local governments institute meaningful changes in the education sector. The Every Student Succeeds (ESSA) policy was signed into law by President Obama in 2015. The law is implemented in the state of Florida. It then became public education law number 114-95 (United States Department of Education, 2020a). The law seeks to provide opportunities to all learners to receive fair, just, and high-quality education in all schools (United States Department of Education, 2020a). The policy targets both learners and educators, thus, promoting equal access to educational services and support is the core focus of the legislation.
Every Student Succeeds policy confronts the varied challenges that educators encounter in the education sector in the state of Florida. These issues encompass accountability requirements, imprudent school improvement systems, and inadequate capacity building among tutors (United States Department of Education, 2020a). The law institutes new accountability systems, conduct assessment on failing schools, implements robust initiatives meant to monitor the progress of learners and tutors.
The ESSA has some sub-policies ESSA. These include guidelines on how to utilize grants to foster the growth of early childhood education, programs to sustain literacy instructions, addressing the mental needs of learners, and adoption of technology in learning (United States Department of Education, 2020a). Regarding implementation issues, the law transforms the long-standing role of tests in the education system to institute complex methods of measuring the performance of learners that varies from one state to another. It accords more autonomy to states to define success and interventions to be implemented if schools fail to show meaningful progress. Therefore, the law promotes differential implementation as each state decides on how to evaluate its schools and educators.
Family Educational Rights and Privacy (FERPA) is an educational policy enacted in 1974 aimed at safeguarding the privacy of student’s data in schools. The legislation number is 20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99 (United States Department of Education, 2020b). FERPA policy is currently implemented in the state of Colorado. It targets parents and eligible students and accords them with certain rights regarding access to academic records. The policy was enacted to tackle parent’s growing reservations regarding the privacy of their children’s data, and the need to succinctly comprehend the records factored in the decisions made by schools concerning performance and progress.
The sub-policy included in FERPA relates to parental communication and involvement. Under the provision, parents are assured of the confidentiality of financial data they share with schools and can gain access to students’ records if financial dependency is established (Weeks, 2001). Additionally, parents may access data relating to drug and alcohol use policies. Regarding implementation issues, FERPA does not provide the right for students and parents to file private complaints to challenge the suspected violations of the policy.
Education policies are implemented at the state and local levels of government. The federal government and state of Florida continue to highlight the need to accord an equal opportunity to all learners through the ESSA policy. In the same way, the federal government and state of Colorado address students’ record privacy concerns through the FERPA policy. The federal, states, and local governments focus on improving the quality and access to education services through the discussed policies.
United States Department of Education. (2020a). Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). U.S. Department of Education. Retrieved from https://www.ed.gov/essa?src=policy.
United States Department of Education. (2020b). Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). U.S. Department of Education. https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html?src=ft.
Weeks, K. (2001). Family-friendly FERPA policies: affirming parental partnerships. New Directions for Student Services, 94, 39-50.