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Effective educators strive to support the whole child and measure success

in terms of students and staff who are healthy, safe, engaged, supported,

and challenged. It is time for national policymakers to embrace this

goal by aligning federal education programs into a coherent system that

supports each student from early childhood through graduation.

ASCD calls on Congress and the Obama administration to adopt the following recommendations

to promote the comprehensive achievement of educators, students, schools, and families.

Well-Rounded Education

All students deserve comprehensive and engaging

opportunities that prepare them for college and careers and

to be active, productive citizens who positively contribute

to our communities. A well-rounded education for all

students means

• Access to and proficiency in all academic subjects.

• Availability of Advanced Placement, International

Baccalaureate, or college dual-enrollment courses.

• Public reporting of existing student achievement data

in every academic subject at the school, district, and

state levels.

Conditions for Learning

A strong foundation of support is necessary for students

to maximize their potential. Students must receive

comprehensive assistance through

• In-school social and emotional learning, mental health

services, and counseling to increase their capacity to


• Meaningful parental, youth, and community


• High-quality early childhood education.

• Flexible decision-making authority for local school

leaders to meet educational goals and mandates.

• The repeal of sequestration and a new federal

maintenance of effort requirement to establish a

mandatory baseline for federal education funding.

Multimetric Accountability

Standardized tests should never be the primary measure

of student achievement, educator effectiveness, or school

quality. Accountability systems must promote continuous

support and improvement and

• Be public and transparent.

• Include a range of subjects beyond English language

arts and mathematics.

• Use a variety of measures, including formative

assessments, evidence of student learning, and

progress toward personal growth objectives.

• Incorporate important nonacademic factors such

as measures of school climate, safety, and parental


Developing Educator Effectiveness

Educators are the most important in-school factor

affecting student achievement. Thus, effective preparation

efforts and ongoing professional development systems for

classroom teachers and school leaders must

• Evaluate teachers in only the subjects they teach.

• Provide personalized development that recognizes

educators’ strengths and enhances their growth.

• Make the necessary investments in time and

resources to support educators along the entire career


• Use evaluations based on multiple measures that

include observations, peer reviews, and evidence of

student learning.

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