Inhofe Praises Passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) today praised the bipartisan passage of S. 1177, the Every Student Succeeds Act, the legislative update to the No Child Left Behind law, which expired in 2007. This measure passed by a vote of 85-12.

“The Every Student Succeeds Act is long overdue and the largest step we’ve taken toward giving the power over our children’s education back to the states in 25 years” said Inhofe. “The Obama Administration has become a national school board in recent years, pushing liberal policies like Common Core. This bill ends that practice and ends Common Core, allowing Oklahoma to sets standards and accountabilities for Oklahomans. It leaves federal bureaucrats out of the picture. I am also pleased that an amendment I sponsored with Sen. Booker is incorporated into the final version of the bill. This amendment will help improve the future of some of the most vulnerable in our education system, homeless and foster youth, by reporting on graduation rates on state and district report cards. Education is not one size fits all and this legislation refocuses education standards back to local communities and their leaders, teachers and parents who know our children the best.”

Background:

S. 1177 Every Student Succeeds Act reforms the outdated No Child Left Behind by:

  • Ending the Common Core mandate.
  • Ending the Secretary of Education's ability to require states to obtain waivers from the federal government to continue receiving funding without more burdensome federal requirements.
  • Empowering states to establish accountability systems instead of the federal government. The accountability systems will be state-designed and meet minimum federal parameters, but the federal government is prohibited from determining or approving state standards. This reform will allow states to determine the best way to hold their teachers and school districts accountable to delivering results.

The Senate passed their version of the bill July 17, 2015 by a vote of 81-17.

The bill passed out of conference November 19, 2015 by a vote of 38-1.

The bill reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act through fiscal year 2021.

In 2014, Oklahoma was forced to prove that the state met national standards to obtain this flexibility; the Obama Administration tried to use this leverage to force Oklahoma to adopt Common Core. Senator Inhofe led the delegation letter to the U.S. Department of Education for reinstatement of the waiver. Soon after, the Administration relented when  Oklahoma’s own standards were certified by the State as college- and career-ready.

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