- The U.S. House of Representatives approved a resolution this week that would overturn regulations finalized by the Obama administration that govern accountability and teacher preparation programs under the Every Student Succeeds Act.
- Education Week reports the accountability regulations impact school ratings systems, interventions for struggling schools and the types of indicators that determine school quality, among other things, and if the regulations are actually overturned, Congress cannot issue “substantially similar” replacements before the next reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
- While supporters hail the move as a step toward undoing Obama’s overreach into state business, critics say overturning these regulations would invalidate the hard work states have done over the last year to transition to ESSA and limit the new secretary of education’s role.
While the Every Student Succeeds Act passed with bipartisan support, the Obama administration regulations have angered Republicans as going beyond the letter of the law. Even after the U.S. Department of Education released draft regulations, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), head of his chamber’s education committee, threatened a lawsuit if they went too far.
Many Republican-controlled states have eschewed the Common Core State Standards, more in name than in substance. States that have abandoned the Common Core, officially, have approved new standards that are nearly identical. If the Congressional move to abandon Obama era regulations is similarly for optics, Republicans will not have the option of merely minor changes.