• ESSA school designations create an opportunity to build on strengths and close gaps in service to our students.

    The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is federal legislation that requires each state to develop its own ESSA plan in order to access federal grant dollars that ultimately flow to individual school districts.  This is the first year that the State of Illinois will fully implement this plan. Unique within the state, District #61 has opted to use the first year as a planning year for our schools to create improvement plans that include long-term goals, identify support needs and resources for our low-performing schools, challenge academic standards and assessments, and universal indicators of school quality and student progress. Our plans must account for the needs of specific demographic populations and address how we will use federal funds to ensure equitable resources for all of our students.

    As required by ESSA, each Illinois school will receive a summative designation. This rating scale is based on a number of factors including academic achievement, chronic absenteeism, and academic growth; in fact, student growth comprises 50 percent of the overall rating. Click here to learn more about the indicators used to determine a school's summative designation.

    Each year, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) released its annual Illinois School Report Card information, showing schools' performance and progress on a wide range of metrics. The report card includes the summative designation for each one of our schools. This state-level ranking is one way our schools are measured and evaluated by the state.

    Decatur Public Schools will continue to review multiple measures as we reflect upon our district’s many celebrations and many opportunities for continued improvement. We will review our students’ standardized assessment data to continually monitor proficiency and growth percentiles. We will also take into consideration many facets of our strategic priorities tied to both student learning environments and experiences, opportunities for success in our district with community partnerships, and the social-emotional development of each child.

    Should you have any questions about the state ESSA plan for our district, please feel free to contact your child's school principal. Additional information can also be found on ISBE's website at www.isbe.net/essa.  

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