School librarians and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

Capital SunsetOn December 10, 2015, President Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) into law. ESSA, which included school libraries in a number of the provisions, replaces the No Child Left Behind version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and has language that ensures “effective school libraries” are addressed in state and local plans.

Effect on School Libraries

ESSA has ramifications for school libraries beyond making them “effective” and AASL has weighed in on opportunities they see for school librarians. From improving basic programs operated by state and local educational agencies to innovative approaches to literacy, thier document highlights and provides an overview of initial next steps to help maximize opportunities for effective school library programming.

Get Involved!

There will be an informational meeting put on by the Minnesota Department of Education to discuss ESSA’s effect on schools in Minnesota and solicit feedback for developing a ESSA state plan. Visit their website for more information or attend the event!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016
9:00 to 10:30 a.m.
at MDE, Conference Center B, Room 15

Please contact Clair Gades at to confirm your attendance at the informational meeting on February 9.

Even More Information

ESSA is a big piece of legislation and all its effects have not been fully realized. Stay tuned for all the ripple effects with these links:

Read all the ESSA news from District Dispatch

ESSA news from American Libraries

AASL advocacy and next steps for ESSA

Finally, you can watch President Obama talk about the importance of signing ESSA into law.

Image credit:, licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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