Research Paper on Every Student Succeed Act

Paper Type:  Research paper
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1289 Words
Date:  2022-08-15


The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) came into effect with after the form president Barack ascended to the Act in December of 2015. The Act reaffirmed the governments' commitments to providing equal opportunities for all students. The bill supplemented the previous education act's progress made possible by the different stakeholders in the field. The government is now recording the lowest high school dropout rates in history. The law is similar to the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act whose prescriptive requirements were deemed unworkable for both educators and schools and hence the inception of ESSA during the Obama era (Sharp, 2016). The paper aims at giving a historical and constitutional basis for the American Government structure as well as discussing the checks and balances in the program. The paper will also look into various roles the act plays in policy elections and finally, the voting and election process.

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Historical and Constitutional Background

From the early 1800's, the role of the children was limited to farm work, and they were not required to attend school. The school system encompassed children of all ages receiving their education in a one-room schoolhouse. The federal government at the time was tasked with allocating land to any interested school. President Johnson, who had been a teacher in the 1930's signed the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) into law and prioritized education as one of the crucial attainable goals during his term. In 1968, Congress introduced new programs to ESEA that now catered for neglected, bilingual and migrant children. The act faced accountability issues over the years with significant federal cuts experienced in the reduction of federal support as of 1981 (Hess, & Eden, 2017).

ESEA was reauthorized under President George Bush in 2002 and renamed to No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) to solve the issue of education inequalities and the high dropout rates. Control of education was taken away from the states and given to the national government. The act required states to assess their students annually and help in achieving the goal of ensuring that all students are proficient in math and language. In 2015 Obama reauthorized ESEA to ESSA mandate the state with the power in decision making and resource (Hopkins, et al., 2013).

Checks and Balances

ESSA is one of the government's major projects, and the White house oversees the financing of the program through the Department of Education. Congress, being the arm of the government closest to the people is tasked with authorizing bills and setting national policies which are then presented for funding. The Congress determines the amount of money to be given to the school districts. Checks and balances are essential in ensuring that the funds are not misappropriated. If the set rules are not obeyed on how to use the allocated resources, then the school districts risk losing funding. The executive and the legislature are checked by the judiciary where lawsuits concerning funding and misappropriation are presented. Instances occur where the arms conflict on different decisions especially the amount allocated for each state as they all have different educational needs. The executive Branch only acts with the advice of the Congress, whose function is authorization and appropriation and in instances of conflict, the judiciary is tasked with making the decision (Bowman, 2018).

Public Policies, Election and Media

Research conducted by scholars and data received from governmental and private organizations indicate that the general attitude towards public schools is an aggravated one as they believe that these institutions are underfunded. All stakeholders in the education sector agree with the legislative arm that there is a need for more funding to go into these public schools and help bridge the educational level disparity. Underfunding is a significant problem with state schools, and consequently, they lack essential amenities, and the teachers are demotivated to teach (Cook-Harvey et al, 2016).

As the Congress was debating on the effectiveness of the Act, little media attention was given to the issue, but it was reported that parents, students, activists, advocates and other members of the public sent emails to media outlets asking them to shed more light on the issue. The initial coverage was superficial and vague. This would enable them to make a sound judgment concerning their children after understanding the bill. The bill indicated a people willing to understand public policies and how they affect them. They were also keen to understand and evaluate how their elected members of Congress dealt with such a sensitive issue that changed the future of their children. A steady supply of matters concerning the national and local policies since then received the much-needed media attention (DeBray, 2005).

Voting and Election Process

The bill came into effect during the election period. The political climate was at an all-time high with voters gearing to elect in new members based on this decision and the side they defended. The citizens of the United States always want assurance that sound policies will be implemented that will ensure their children get a better future and a better education. The country's president and the Congress are tasked with finding creative ways of using taxpayers money to benefit them and solve any issues in the society. The citizens vote in the person with a manifesto that helps them in the future. Parents wanted to know how the people they vote in will safeguard the future of their children and not play games with their tax money. The education reform was a tipping point for any members as their constituents were watching. Despite the different rules and conflicts that occurred in the Senate and House Bills, the bill was still passed by the 114th congress with compromises being made for the Act (McGuinn, 2016)


ESSA is an act, if well implemented, will revolutionize the education system and bring equality despite the racial, economic and ethnic differences that exist among the families in the United States. The act is a decent substitution of NCLB because the power was given back to the states. These states have personalized problems and only they can solve the issues facing them. The act is essential as it guarantees children the opportunity to learn and plan for the future to wind up an accomplishment throughout their lives. The media and the voting procedure had a tremendous to play in its sanctioning. The general population put voting on how Congress and the President can enable the kids to improve their training. Education is an important position when it comes to decision time. The future belongs to the young people and it is essential that they get the right education to enable them become the people they always aimed to become. Checks and balances are essential in ensuring the success of the program.


Bowman, K. L., (2018). The Failure Of Education Federalism. University Of Michigan Journal

Cook-Harvey, C. M., Darling-Hammond, L., Lam, L., Mercer, C., & Roc, M. (2016). Equity and ESSA: Leveraging educational opportunity through the Every Student Succeeds Act.

DeBray, E. H. (2005). Chapter 2: Partisanship and ideology in the ESEA reauthorization in the 106th and 107th Congresses: Foundations for the new political landscape of federal education policy. Review of Research in Education, 29(1), 29-50.

Hess, F. M., & Eden, M. (Eds.). (2017). The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA): What It Means for Schools, Systems, and States. Harvard Education Press.

Hopkins, M., Thompson, K. D., Linquanti, R., Hakuta, K., & August, D. (2013). Fully accounting for English learner performance: A key issue in ESEA reauthorization. Educational Researcher, 42(2), 101-108.

McGuinn, P. (2016). From no child left behind to the every student succeeds act: Federalism and the education legacy of the Obama administration. Publius: The Journal of Federalism, 46(3), 392-415.

Of Law Reform, 51(1), 1-53. Retrieved from EBSCOhost database.

Sharp, L. A., (2016) ESEA Reauthorization: An Overview of the Every Student Succeeds Act: Texas Journal of Literacy Education, 4(1), 9-13.

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Research Paper on Every Student Succeed Act. (2022, Aug 15). Retrieved from

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