By Caitlin Emma | Politico Morning Education
John King, who takes the reins from Education Secretary Arne Duncan next month, has a huge to-do list — and not a lot of time. Obviously, he’ll spend a good chunk of the Obama administration’s final year in office working to regulate and implement the Every Student Succeeds Act. But that’s just part of a much broader agenda.
King recently told Morning Education that he has three major priorities for 2016. For one, he wants to build on the administration’s focus on “equity and excellence.” “We’ve made tremendous progress, but we have a long distance to travel. Even though we’ve cut the number of ‘dropout factories’ in half, we still have high schools that are graduating 50 percent of their students. We still have many students who don’t have access to advanced coursework … but the new law gives us some new tools to improve that.”
He said he also hopes to maintain the civil rights legacy of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act while setting “guardrails” for states’ new flexibility under ESSA and supporting states on implementation.