The Secretary also recently announced that both Alabama and New Hampshire will receive flexibility from the burdensome mandates of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). In exchange for this new flexibility, the states have agreed to raise academic standards, improve accountability, and undertake essential reforms to boost teacher effectiveness. The Department has now approved waiver requests from 39 states and the District of Columbia. Eight other applications are still under review, and five states have not requested flexibility through this process. And, California notified the agency that the state does not plan to request Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) flexibility for the next school year and, instead, will focus on implementing Common Core state standards. The Department will continue its consideration of a separate request for waivers from California Office to Reform Education (CORE) school districts.
In the interest of transparency and to help inform other states, the Department has posted here initial and approved flexibility requests, highlights of each state’s plan, and peer review notes, as well as the agency’s letter regarding peer review feedback and the Secretary’s approval letter.