Acting U.S. Education Secretary John B. King Jr. will bring his “Opportunity Across America” tour to Wilmington, Delaware, Friday, Jan. 22. He will hold a roundtable with members of the state’s Assessment Inventory Committee to discuss efforts to improve and reduce testing as we implement the new education law, Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). A media availability will follow. Last year, the state provided funding for school districts to conduct assessment inventories. A committee of teachers, administrators, parents, and lawmakers are currently reviewing the inventories and recommendations, and the Delaware Department of Education will release a report later this year.
Signed into law by President Obama on December 10, 2015, ESSA helps ensure educational opportunity by holding all students to high academic standards that prepare them for success in college and careers; reducing the often onerous burden of testing on students and teachers; making sure that tests don’t crowd out teaching and learning, without sacrificing clear, annual information parents and educators need to make sure our children are learning; and empowering state and local decision-makers to develop their own strong systems for school improvement.
The Wilmington stop is the last in a five-city journey to highlight good work underway in schools and communities across the country and to hear stories, experiences and insights about what’s working and what needs to be done. The tour began Jan. 14 in El Paso, Texas, and continued in Houston, Orlando and Philadelphia. The tour focused on King’s top priorities for the next year: promoting equity and excellence at every level of education to ensure that every child has the opportunity to succeed; supporting and lifting up the teaching profession; and continuing the Department’s focus on returning America to the top of the rankings in college completion by ensuring more students earn an affordable degree with real value.