Washington, D.C. — Khalilah Harris, acting vice president of K-12 Education Policy at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement today regarding waivers of annual student assessment requirements in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA):

At its heart, the Every Student Succeeds Act is a civil rights bill designed to support gaps in opportunity too many of our students have faced historically through to the present. One way it does that is by ensuring that states annually assess all students against the same standards for learning and analyze results by student groups to ensure that students who have been historically marginalized are not experiencing widening gaps in opportunity.

These assessments were canceled across the country last year when schools closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This was the right choice. The health

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