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ESSA Clears Out Underbrush on School Improvement Path

For more than a decade, states and districts have had to consider off-the-shelf, federally prescribed interventions for many schools in which students weren’t meeting expectations.

That’s about to change.

The new Every Student Succeeds Act, the latest revision of the nation’s main K-12 education law, gives local leaders a freer hand when it comes to fixing their lowest-performing schools, those with serious dropout problems, and schools that are doing well overall but where a particular group of students might be struggling.