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NEA on ESSA Negotiated Rulemaking Committee

Lily Eskelsen García: The voices of the educators will be critical to ensuring student success

WASHINGTON - March 18, 2016 -

Earlier this month The U.S. Department of Education announced negotiators for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Negotiated Rulemaking Committee. The committee will draft and negotiate regulations which will be published in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for public comment. The Committee will meet beginning March 21, 2016.

The following can be attributed to National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen García.

“The National Education Association congratulates all of the negotiators who were selected to develop appropriate regulations to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act. They have a unique opportunity to influence regulations in order to ensure all of our students succeed.

"Innovation. Opportunity. Collaboration. These are our hopes for the Title I Negotiated Rulemaking. The voices of the educators who were selected to be part of the negotiating team will be critical to shaping a regulatory package that focuses on student success while preserving room for innovation and strengthened support at the state, local, and school levels to support every student.

"The law returns significant responsibility to states and schools districts to ensure students are learning. This shift offers the Department of Education the opportunity to focus on its enforcement authority and responsibility it has to ensure students have equitable access to a robust and well-rounded education and to the support systems they need to excel.

"This kind of monumental transition will require, if we do this correctly, deep collaboration among multiple stakeholders, some of whom are not used to working together. More voices need to be at decision-making tables. None of us should want to shortcut this collaboration—that’s the only way the new law will work. And we owe it to our students to make it work.

"NEA congratulates all of the negotiators who were selected to develop appropriate regulations to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act. We are pleased to recognize two of our own members that we nominated to serve on the committee. Congratulations to Lynn Goss, a paraeducator for Menomonie Middle in Menomonie, WI., and Ryan Ruelas a social studies teacher at Anaheim High School and a school board member in Anaheim, CA. Selected to represent the geographic regions of the nation and the various constituencies impacted by the law, Goss and Ruelas will work with other committee members representing local school leaders, educators, parents, and civil rights groups.

"We are also pleased that other current and former members of NEA have been selected to serve on the committee, including Mary Cathryn Ricker, executive vice president of the American Federation of Teachers from St. Paul Public Schools, MN; Derrick Chau, LA Unified School District, CA; Thomas Ahart, Des Moines Public Schools, IA; Rita Pin Ahrens, Washington, DC; Aqueelha James, DC Public Schools; Eric Parker, Montgomery Public Schools, AL; Regina Goings , Clark County School District, NV; and Kenneth Brown, Office Depot, NC.
"It's imperative that educators' voices are heard in the implementation of ESSA. We know what our nation's students need to succeed, and this committee gives us an arena to advocate for them."

Background resources and meeting details can be found at  

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The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing nearly 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Celeste Busser
Senior Press Officer
National Education Association
202-262-0589 (c)
202-822-7259 (o)