Third Statewide Listening Tour to Gather Feedback on ESSA State Plan

ISBE to make eight stops in Chicago, Jacksonville, Aurora, Forest Park, Crystal Lake, Galesburg, and Decatur


SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has announced eight stops on a third statewide listening tour regarding Illinois’ Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) State Plan. Through the listening tour, ISBE, in collaboration with Regional Offices of Education, will continue collecting feedback from all stakeholders on Illinois’ draft plan to implement the new federal education law.

ISBE developed the draft ESSA State Plan based on stakeholder feedback received at two previous statewide listening tours and hundreds of comments submitted online. Explore the plan on the ISBE website at ISBE staff will present the second draft of the plan to the State Board on Nov. 18, as well as post the updated draft online. 

“As we learned from the release of the Illinois Report Card, the majority of the generations of students entrusted to us are not prepared for college or career. Reversing that tide requires participation and collaboration,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “I encourage parents, teachers, principals, superintendents, and leaders from business and our local communities to seize this opportunity to provide input and come together in charting Illinois’ path forward.”

The third statewide ESSA listening tour includes stops in Chicago, Jacksonville, Aurora, Forest Park, Crystal Lake, Galesburg, and Decatur. In addition to submitting comments in person during the listening tour, all stakeholders are encouraged to send comments via email to ISBE has compiled and posted all of the comments received thus far at

The third statewide ESSA listening tour stops are listed below. All meetings will take place from 5-7 p.m.




Monday, Nov. 28

Chicago Public School District 299

Schurz High School

3601 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago

Monday, Nov. 28

Jacksonville School District 117

Jacksonville High School

1211 N. Diamond St., Jacksonville

Thursday, Dec. 1

Indian Prairie School District 204

Indian Prairie School District Crouse Education Center

780 Shoreline Dr., Aurora

Monday, Dec. 5

Proviso Township High School District 209

Proviso Math and Science Academy

8601 West Roosevelt Rd., Forest Park

Tuesday, Dec. 6

Chicago Public School District 299

Austin Town Hall

5610 W. Lake St., Chicago

Dec. 7


Crystal Lake School District 47

Bernotas Middle School

170 N. Oak St., Crystal Lake

Dec. 7

Galesburg School District 205

Silas Willard Elementary School

460 Fifer St., Galesburg

Thursday, Dec. 8

Decatur Public School District 61

Eisenhower High School

1200 S. 16th St., Decatur

ISBE plans to submit its third draft of the Illinois State Plan to Governor Bruce Rauner for feedback in January. The final draft will be presented to the State Board on Feb. 22. ISBE then will submit its finalized Illinois State Plan to the U.S. Department of Education in March. ISBE opted to submit the plan in March instead of July in order to ensure that Illinois school districts receive the final approved plan by the start of the 2017-18 school year.

Congress passed the Every Student Succeeds Act in 2015, reauthorizing and amending the 50-year-old Elementary and Secondary Education Act and replacing the most recent version of the law, called No Child Left Behind. Illinois’ ESSA State Plan embraces the significant opportunity ESSA presents to better serve all students. By considering what educating “the whole child” means and designing supports and programming that take into account every student’s unique strengths and needs, the State Plan aims to equip all students to succeed in college and career. The new law takes effect in phases over the next two school years. For more information regarding ESSA, please visit