MARC H. MORIAL

(TriceEdneyWire.com)—“Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin, is the great equalizer of the conditions of men, the balance-wheel of the social machinery.” —Horace Mann

New pencils, new books, an apple for the teacher, and unlimited hope for a boundless future—it’s back to school time across the country. And whether their children are boarding a school bus on a country road or a subway heading across the city, parents are united in their hopes and aspirations for their children. And the Urban League Movement shares those dreams.

A high-quality education is a civil and human right. One of the National Urban League’s empowerment goals is that every American child is prepared for college, work and life.  In 2015 when ESSA was signed into law, we worked to ensure that there were strong regulations that would provide necessary safeguards for students and families. With a different administration, we have redoubled our efforts—supporting national and state advocacy, engagement and education reform actions throughout the Urban League Affiliate Movement and with other civil rights organizations.

ESSA is an opportunity for states to close opportunity and achievement gaps by increasing access to effective teachers and advanced coursework, closing funding gaps, supporting English learners and addressing students social and emotional needs.

Equitable implementation is key to ensuring the promise of ESSA for all children.

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