The Elementary and Secondary Education Act was enacted in 1965 with the goal of providing federal resources to states and districts for compensatory services that would improve the achievement of low-income students. Since that time, periodic reauthorizations of ESEA have provided powerful moments to revisit, refine, and refocus the federal investment in our nation’s K-12 schools and their students.
The current environment calls for the refinement and revision of the nation’s cornerstone K-12 education legislation. Since the original formulation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, our country has experienced vast economic changes. The current era of globalization requires our students now more than ever to obtain a postsecondary credential and experience in the workplace in order to secure a family-sustaining career. College and career readiness is critical: for example, literacy, math, technology, and critical thinking skills are now nearly non-negotiable for postsecondary and career success.
To this end, JFF offers four simple policy recommendations in this brief.