Amendment to the State’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) State Plan

Date:  February 23, 2023
Subject: Amendment to the State’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) State Plan
Category: Notice
Next Steps:  Share with appropriate staff


This letter is to notify you of updates to the amendment of the state’s ESSA plan to adjust the methodology within the Closing the Gaps domain. These updates have been made in response to stakeholder feedback and guidance from the U.S. Department of Education (USDE). 

Summary of Amendment Updates 

Proposed 0–4 Points Definitions 

The definition of two points for growth has been updated to measure six years of growth to the next interim target by increasing the denominator to six in alignment with the next interim target increment in 2027–2028. This adjustment measures expected growth from the 2022–2023 school year through the 2027–2028 school year.

Points Definition
4 Met long-term target (2037–2038 target)
3 Met interim target (2022–2023 through 2026–2027 target)
2 Did not meet interim target but showed expected growth toward next interim target (2027–2028 through 2031–2032 target)
1 Did not meet interim target but showed minimal growth
0 Did not meet interim target and did not show minimal growth

Expected growth to interim target (for 2 points) is defined as on-track growth to reach the next interim target. The denominator for 2023 is six years. The denominator for 2024 will be five years and so forth. 

Current year rate – prior year rate ≥ next interim target – prior year rate / 6 

Minimal growth (for 1 point) is defined as at least 1.0 percent growth for STAAR and CCMR indicators. Minimal growth is at least 0.1 percent growth for graduation indicators. 

Student Groups Evaluated 

While each student group will be evaluated within Closing the Gaps under ESSA requirements, a subset of the groups will be measured for the Closing the Gaps rating while disaggregated groups will be measured for targeted support and improvement (TSI) and additional targeted support (ATS) determinations. Disaggregated data for each of the student groups will be reported and evaluated within Closing the Gaps. 

  • All students 
  • Seven racial/ethnic groups: African American, American Indian, Asian, Hispanic, Pacific Islander, white, and two or more races 
  • Economically disadvantaged 
  • Emergent bilingual (EB) student/English learner (EL) (current and monitored through year 4) 
  • Special education 
  • Foster 
  • Homeless  
  • Migrant 
  • Continuously enrolled 
  • Former special education 

Student Groups Evaluated for Closing the Gaps Rating 

  • All students 
  • Two lowest performing racial/ethnic groups from the prior year  
  • High focus (Students are included in the high focus student group if they are identified as any of the following.) 
  • Economically disadvantaged 
  • EB student/EL  
  • Current special education 
  • Highly mobile (foster, homeless, migrant) 

Based on guidance from the USDE, the continuously enrolled and former special education student groups are moved to TSI and ATS evaluation.  

Student Groups Evaluated for Federal School Improvement  

Disaggregated data for the following student groups will be measured for TSI/ATS identifications.  

  • African American 
  • American Indian  
  • Asian  
  • Hispanic  
  • Pacific Islander  
  • White 
  • Two or more races 
  • Economically disadvantaged 
  • Special education 
  • Emergent bilingual (EB) students/English learners (EL)  
  • Continuously Enrolled (beginning with 2023) 
  • Former Special Education (beginning with 2023) 

The continuously enrolled and former special education groups will be evaluated for ATS/TSI for the first time in 2023. These two groups could potentially be identified as “consistently underperforming” in August 2025 based on data from 2023, 2024, and 2025.  

For Further Information  

A detailed summary of the proposed Closing the Gaps changes, comments and responses, and a full draft of the submitted ESSA amendment, including Appendix A and Appendix E, are available on the Every Student Succeeds Act page.   

If you have any questions regarding this amendment, please contact Texas Education Agency’s Performance Reporting Division at (512) 463-9704 or