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  • In Tennessee, we have laid a firm foundation for our students’ future by raising standards to a more rigorous level that will prepare them for college and careers; establishing fully aligned assessments to ensure all of our students are developing problem-solving and critical thinking skills; and by using evaluation and accountability systems based on multiple factors.

    ESSA builds on this work by reaffirming the importance of standards, assessment, and accountability and through empowering states to make decisions for our kids. ESSA replaces No Child Left Behind, and Tennessee will fully transition to ESSA in the 2017-18 school year. Much of the work we have outlined in our waiver and in the Tennessee Succeeds strategic plan – which was developed with extensive stakeholder engagement – is in sync with the new law and will allow for a seamless transition.

    ESSA has provided a chance for our state to build on the department’s vision to prepare all students to be successful on their chosen path in life by heightening our focus on equity and expanding opportunities for every student in Tennessee. In April 2017, Tennessee submitted a final ESSA plan that was based on feedback from thousands of Tennesseans over the course of a year. Learn more about our ESSA plan through the various materials and resources on this site.