MDE submits ESEA waiver

Michigan is among 26 states that have applied for waivers under the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The waiver would free states from some ESEA requirements, in exchange for adopting key reforms. Eleven states have already received a waiver.

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is especially concerned with the 2013-14 timeline for determining Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) and it’s a key element of the waiver request. ESEA requires that all students be 100 percent proficient by that date. 

If the waiver is approved, the state can set performance targets based on career and college readiness. MDE will also have more flexibility in how it spends federal funds.

The waiver request doesn’t come without conditions—one being the submission of teacher and principal evaluation guidelines. Currently, the Governor’s Council on Education Effectiveness will make its recommendations by April 30.

MDE will also be implementing a new report card that will hold schools accountable for student performance and achievement gaps.

Michigan should know this spring if its waiver request is granted.