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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.
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
• 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
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.
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