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State Ed. Commissioner is holding hearings on 'Every Student Succeeds Act'

Randy Gorbman

New York State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia has been gathering public input on the state’s ESSA plan, which stands for the Every Student Succeeds Act.  That’s the  plan that replaced No Child Left Behind, and each state is coming up with its own version of the program which must then be approved by the federal government.

Elia has been hosting public hearings around the state, including one at Rush-Henrietta High School on Tuesday night.

She says the new ESSA  plan is expected to give states more flexibility.

“I think that basically it gives more power to the states and state education and districts across the state to really determine how they’re going to support schools that need additional help.”

Elia says that new plan will take effect in the 2018-19 school year.

At some of the public hearings, Elia is also hearing from people who  have questions about the recently announced changes in the state's common core testing procedures.

After a lot of criticism from teachers , parents and students, the state has been working to streamline and improve the standardized tests.

“We’ve now really focused on getting involvement from teachers and practitioners across the state and parents to tell us, these are the things we want our children to know. And I believe there are still rigorous standards but they’re very different from the Common Core and they were changed  by teacher teams.”

Elia says the State Board of Regents will consider the revised Common Core standards in July, but it will take a couple of years to implement them.

Elia made her comments in a live interview Wednesday morning on WXXI.