The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is the reauthorization of the 50-year-old Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the country’s national education law and longstanding commitment to equal opportunity for all students. President Barack Obama signed the bipartisan measure into law on December 10, 2015. ESSA tasks individual states to create a plan to ensure every child is learning and on the path to college and career.
2021 Accountability Addendum
Cancelling assessments in 2020 will impact the calculation of accountability designation in 2021 (i.e., growth calculation when missing a prior score). In October 2020, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) provided information on potential flexibility in regards to the determinations of accountability designations in 2021. In order to plan for the future, ISBE intends to take advantage of the allowable flexibilities offered by ED.
The first step in that process is submitting the following proposed addendum to our approved ESSA accountability plan. Submitting this addendum is formal request to modify our accountability system in 2021. It is not a formal amendment.
The purpose of the proposed adjustments is to postpone identification of new schools for comprehensive supports, targeted supports, and supports to address chronically underperforming groups so any new identifications can be made based on more traditional accountability structures (i.e. the previous calculation and scoring rules) and data in 2022.
The document below describes changes to the accountability system - its indicators and how they are calculated and scored - that are permissible within the addendum. These proposed changes are non-binding, and do not preclude Illinois from submitting a formal amendment or requesting greater flexibility if it is offered in the future.
To submit a formal comment, please email
For questions about the proposal, please email Accountability director Rae Clementz at
email@example.com or join one of our live webinars on Tuesday, December 8 from 9:30 to 11:30 AM or Monday, December 21 from 1:00 to 3:00 PM.
Register for the "Accountability in 2021" webinar.
ISBE wanted to develop a state plan that reflected the ideas of those who are closest to the work and so sought out the voices, values, and vision of stakeholders and practitioners. The participation of diverse educators, communities, and advocates made the Illinois ESSA Plan durable.
The Illinois ESSA Plan represents the belief of ISBE and our stakeholders that the students with the greatest needs deserve the greatest share of our public education resources. Grounding our work in the practice of equity will ensure that we provide all students with the supports they need to succeed from pre-K through high school and onto purposeful lives.
This page tracks the development of the plan itself. For information about Illinois’ active Support and Accountability System, visit
Support & Accountability. For information specifically about Site-Based Expenditure Reporting, visit the
Site-Based Expenditure Reporting webpage.
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