ESSA Spoke Committees

For those who don’t know what ESSA is, it’s the Every Student Succeeds Act, a federal law that replaces No Child Left Behind, and gives states, like Colorado, greater flexibility on education policy.

This is potentially good news.  We have a unique opportunity to shape the course of education in Colorado for the foreseeable future.  But there is so much work to do, and we all need to join in and help.

“The Hub Committee is only one of the committees that will shape this new policy.  There are several spoke committees that will dig into specific areas of policy such as Assessments, identifying new indicators for student and school achievement, Accountability, Standards, Title program implementation among others.  This is our chance to step up and make the most impact for our kids – all 900,000 of them in Colorado.”

Here’s some information we received on the standards spoke committee:

“Under the guidance of the State Board of Education, the CDE will utilize a Hub/Spoke Committee structure for ESSA state plan development. The idea is to create a formal, central Hub Committee that will have an oversight role in the development of a draft of our state plan to be submitted to the State Board in early 2017, and ESSA topical spoke committees that will be responsible for developing and appropriately vetting sections of the state plan with the nimbleness and flexibility to get the work done in a timely manner. ”

“The Office of Standards and Instructional Support at CDE is hosting an informational webinar about the standards spoke committee on Thursday, August 18, from 3:30 to 4:30 PM.  A recording will be made available for those unable to participate.”

The webinar will provide those interested in participating in or knowing about the work of the committee.  Topics to be addressed in the webinar include: 

  • A general overview of the Colorado’s ESSA state plan development process
  • ESSA requirements for state standards and related components for the state plan
  • Colorado’s process for developing, vetting, and finalizing the standards section of the ESSA state plan
  • How stakeholders can become a part of the committee
  • Expectations of committee members

To participate in the webinar, please follow this link:  https://cdeteachingandlearning.adobeconnect.com/r53bdse10oh/.  Audio will come through your computer.  You may also dial in for audio in the event you experience difficulties: 1-877-820-7831, passcode 712581. 

Following the webinar, the membership for the standards spoke committee will be confirmed and work will begin on the standards section of the ESSA state plan.  To become involved in the committee or to follow its work, please visit:  http://www.cde.state.co.us/essa_stateplandevelopment_standards/.

Like all things in education these days, there are a lot of competing philosophies and ideologies who recognize that this an opportunity to shape education policy with a vision similar to what we experienced in Jeffco, and Thompson not too long ago, and who are still doing irreparable harm in Dougco.  Note that groups like the Independence Institute are on the Hub Committee, and likely are involved in the spoke committees.  If you are concerned about what that might look like, get involved in a spoke committee.  If you can’t do that, talk with your legislators (Representative Brittany Pettersen is on the committee and strong advocate for public education, so give your support).  This is your opportunity to make sure all of our legislators stay informed and aware of what’s going on. This is too important for anyone not to be uninformed.

More info from Chalkbeat:

http://www.chalkbeat.org/posts/co/2016/08/09/why-are-there-two-committees-in-colorado-working-on-the-nations-new-education-law/#.V6tpEZgrLIX

Sign up to help where you can! Parent and teacher voices are very much needed!

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