Posted: Thu, 06/23/2016 - 2:06pm Updated: Thu, 11/19/2020 - 8:13am

Indiana’s Request for Flexibility from Federal Accountability Requirements for the 2020-2021 School Year

In March 2020, the US Department of Education (USEd) granted the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) a waiver from annual assessment and accountability requirements under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESEA) for the 2019-2020 school year due to the widespread impact of COVID-19. On October 20, 2020, the US Department of Education notified state education agencies of the opportunity to modify their federal accountability systems for the 2020-20201 school year to account for the lack of data due to this waiver.

Upon review of its federal accountability system, the IDOE determined that the lack of data from the 2019-2020 school year directly impacts the ability to implement a valid, reliable, and comparable accountability system for the 2020-2021 school year. Therefore, the IDOE will be submitting an addendum to its State Plan and a waiver request to address those aspects of the federal accountability system for which USEd has extended flexibility and are directly impacted by the lack of data from the 2019-2020 school year resulting from the COVID-19 national emergency.

The current drafts of Indiana’s Addendum to the ESEA Consolidated State Plan due to the COVID-19 National Emergency and waiver request are linked below for review and consideration. Individuals who wish to provide comment to the IDOE regarding its addendum and waiver requests may complete and submit this jotform through December 4, 2020.

What is Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)?

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was signed into law on December 10, 2015. It reauthorizes the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which was previously reauthorized as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

The ESSA requires all participating states to submit a consolidated state plan for review by the United State Department of Education. The state ESSA plan must include details regarding the following required components:

  • Challenging State Academic Standards
  • Academic Assessments
  • Statewide Accountability Systems
  • School Support and Improvement Activities

Indiana’s Consolidated State Plan

After much public input and consultation, Indiana submitted its consolidated state plan to the US Department of Education on September 18, 2017. On January 19, 2018, the US Department of Education approved Indiana’s Consolidated State Plan, which was implemented for the first time with the 2017-2018 school year. On February 1, 2019, Indiana submitted an amendment to its consolidated state plan to address changes to the school accountability system after receiving public comment and input.

Document Name Description Date of Publication
Indiana’s State Plan
Indiana’s current Consolidated State Plan under ESSA
November 15, 2019


ESSA Component Resources
Academic Assessments
Statewide Accountability
State Support & Improvement for Low-Performing Schools
Supporting Excellent Educators
Supporting All Students

Archived Materials

Document Name Description Date of Publication
USEd Waiver Approval Letter Approval Letter from U.S. Department of Education of 2020 Waiver Request March 27, 2020
Indiana’s 2020 Waiver Request Indiana’s Waiver Request from Assessment and Accountability Requirements for the 2019-2020 School Year due to COVID-19 March 21, 2020
ESSA Plan with Revisions Indiana’s ESSA plan, with revisions based on U.S. Department of Education Feedback January 8, 2018
ESSA Consolidated Plan Indiana’s ESSA Plan, as submitted to U.S. Department of Education  September 18, 2017
ESSA Plan - Draft Two A draft of the ESSA Plan Submitted to the Governor’s office for feedback August 15, 2017
ESSA Survey Feedback A summary of the stakeholder feedback from the public survey of the first draft of the ESSA plan August 15, 2017
ESSA Plan - Draft One The first draft of the ESSA plan June 30, 2017
Findings from Community Meetings A summary of findings from the ESSA Community Meetings, held in the Spring 2017 June 30, 2017