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Press Release

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Forty-Eight States Gather to Collectively Address ESEA Reauthorization and Implementation of ARRA

With the pending reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) as a focal point, 48 states met at CCSSO's 2010 Legislative Conference in Washington, DC, to address pressing state education issues. Chiefs, their key staff, and CCSSO's corporate partners discussed common core state standards adoption and implementation, new accountability systems aligned to college and career readiness, teacher effectiveness, school turnaround, continued implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), and the President's FY 2011 Department of Education budget proposal. US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan addressed the chiefs and complimented states on their bold leadership in education reform through efforts like the common core and increased data transparency.

"This is a pivotal moment in education," stated CCSSO Executive Director Gene Wilhoit. "We have the opportunity for true equity and excellence in education and we must live up to these expectations for each and every child."

Chief education officials also engaged in discussion with Governor Jeb Bush, Founder and Chairman of the Foundation for Excellence in Education; key Administration and Congressional staff; national organizational representatives such as Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers; and US Department of Education officials. Additionally, the Council awarded its Distinguished Service Award to the Honorable George Miller, Chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee for his long-standing service and commitment to America's public education system. Chairman Miller was one of the original authors of the No Child Left Behind Act and remains committed to meaningful accountability and high standards, while also championing improvement of ESEA.

Following the Legislative Conference, CCSSO held an event on Capitol Hill to release a new policy statement to guide reauthorization of ESEA. The document, available here, embodies CCSSO's call for a federal law that recognizes bold state leadership, encourages innovation and invests in meaningful reform to dramatically raise student achievement and close achievement gaps so all students graduate college and career ready.

"We believe we must create a new state-federal partnership" stated CCSSO President Sue Gendron. "We are leading bold change as states across America and will continue to focus on this goal through innovation and collaboration."

For materials from the conference including the conference workbook, presentations, and videos, please click here. For more information about CCSSO's Legislative Conference, please contact Adam Ezring at or 202-336-7010.