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What we say about new ESSA law

Legislation | 12/11/2015

Deb Jaquith Marketing and Communications Director

Deborah serves as the marketing communications director for Stand for Children Washington.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 10, 2015

Stand for Children Washington Commends Final Passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act

 --Civil Rights bill hasn’t been reauthorized in since 2001—

Seattle, WA – Stand for Children Washington Government Affairs Director, Dave Powell, issued the following statement today following President Obama signing the much-anticipated Every Student Succeeds Act, legislation which reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA):

 “At Stand for Children Washington, our first priority is making sure every child, regardless of their background, graduates from high school prepared for college or a good career. The passage of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is a step in the right direction towards the intent of the original ESEA, a civil rights bill designed to hold states responsible for providing equitable educational opportunities for all children. We are pleased with the assurance that all children will be accounted for and given a chance at a successful life through the opportunity of an excellent education.

 But with the move to give states greater autonomy, our message is this: with great flexibility comes great responsibility. The federal government has done its part. It's now up to us as a state to ensure that all Washington students receive a fair, high-quality education. In a state where we have lost $40 million a year in Federal funds for educating low-income students by not complying with Federal waivers, and where large numbers of high school students have foregone testing that would allow them to skip remedial college courses; it will be imperative that we stay hyper-vigilant of our most underserved students to ensure they are receiving the supports needed to graduate from high school on time, prepared for college or career.

 We cannot allow a bare minimum of expectations to be the norm when it comes to the education of our children.

 Stand for Children Washington looks forward to working with Washington education leaders and elected officials, partners, educators, and parents to keep strong accountability locally in our collective work to build an excellent public education system for all.”

Dave Powell

Government Affairs Executive Director

Stand for Children Washington

Stand for Children Washington is a nonprofit, parent- and community-based organization that works to ensure that all children graduate from high school prepared for and with access to college or career training. Visit

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ESSA, Stand for Children Washington, Dave Powell