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Oklahoma ESSA plan, Oklahoma Edge, approved by U.S. Education Department

OKLAHOMA CITY (July 2, 2018) – The Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE) today announced that the United States Department of Education (USDE) has officially approved the state’s comprehensive education plan, Oklahoma Edge.

Under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), all state education agencies were required to submit a plan for their use of federal dollars. Oklahoma Edge details how Oklahoma will use those funds to ensure every Oklahoma student has a competitive edge upon high school graduation.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister said Oklahoma Edge encapsulates Oklahoma’s 8-year strategic vision for education.

“This plan is so much more than the charts, graphs and technical language that are routine components of official policy whitepapers,” she said. “Oklahoma Edge establishes a specific path forward for every student in our state to achieve the educational outcomes Oklahomans value. These 238 pages reflect countless hours of engagement with educators and more than 5,000 individual pieces of stakeholder feedback. Among a number of innovations in the plan is a methodology unique to Oklahoma: use of priority student groups to isolate and unmask achievement gaps within federally recognized student subgroups.”

View the Oklahoma Edge ESSA PlanOklahoma Edge is built on achieving six measurable goals by 2025:

  • Score among the top 20 highest-performing states on the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) – otherwise known as “the nation’s report card” – in all fourth- and eighth-grade subjects.
  • Reduce by 50 percent the need for mathematics and English language arts remediation after high school.
  • Rank among the top 10 states with the highest graduation rate for students in four-, five- and six-year cohorts.
  • Ensure that every student in grades 6 through 12 develops a useful and meaningful Individual Career Academic Plan (ICAP).
  • Align early childhood education and learning foundations to ensure at least 75 percent of students are “ready to read” upon kindergarten entry.
  • Increase student access to effective teachers, thereby reducing the need for emergency-certified teachers by 95 percent.

The plan’s overarching premise is that every child, educator and school can succeed. To that end, it includes a host of innovative approaches to serving individual learners:

  • Using food as an academic intervention by removing barriers to federal nutrition programs
  • Assigning students to one priority student group in the school accountability system to unmask learning gaps
  • Initiating robust, meaningful and periodic consultation between Oklahoma’s tribal nations and the districts that serve their students
  • Establishing Programs of Excellence to celebrate focal areas of exceptional effectiveness in six areas of a well-rounded education: fine arts, mathematics, science, social studies/civics, world languages and safe and healthy schools
  • Identifying and supporting students of incarcerated parents
  • Increasing the identification of gifted and talented students of color
  • Leveraging out-of-school time to meet student needs and engage family and community

“We were determined to establish audacious, measurable goals for our state and are equally committed to achieving them,” Hofmeister said. “The work to that end is well under way, with significant progress already made in a number of areas. We are excited to forge ahead along a path that I am confident will yield strong, positive academic outcomes that will benefit our students, schools and state.”

In building Oklahoma Edge, OSDE sought input from a diverse cross-section of education stakeholders statewide over a nearly two-year period. That collaboration included more than 5,000 individual points of contact among educators, parents, elected officials, members of the business community, nonprofits, tribal partners and the faith-based community

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Last updated on July 2, 2018