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Every Student Succeeds Act

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is Iowa's way of checking on and helping schools. It was made with input from many people and matches the education work happening in the state. ESSA follows the federal rules, but it's made to fit Iowa.

ESSA took over from the No Child Left Behind Act. It still cares about holding schools accountable and treating all students fairly. However, now, the decisions are more in the hands of the states and local school districts. Iowa's system focuses on helping schools that need it the most.

Iowa School Performance Profiles


ESSA makes sure states find schools that need the most help to make sure all students have the same chances for success. The state looks at different measures every three years to decide which schools need support. These measures include how students do on state tests, their academic achievement, growth, graduation rate, progress in English language skills, and a survey about safety and engagement.

Each school gets a score based on these measures. They also get scores for different groups of students, like those with disabilities. If a school's overall score is in the lowest 5 percent of Title I schools in the state or if its graduation rate is below 67.1 percent, it gets identified for Comprehensive Support and Improvement. If a subgroup of students has a score as low as the lowest 5 percent of schools in the state, the school gets identified for Targeted Support and Improvement.