House Passes Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

Update: More than 140,000 Music Educators and Music Supporters Celebrate the Passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, Elevating Music as a Stand-Alone Subject 

House Passes Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

We are thrilled to report that tonight, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) [S. 1177], by a final vote of 359-64.

The House’s approval of ESSA was perhaps the largest remaining hurdle toward final enactment of the legislation. With the great level of bipartisan support for ESSA in the Senate, we are extremely hopeful for a positive outcome. Consideration of ESSA in the Senate is anticipated to occur as early as next Monday, December 7th.

In the meantime, NAfME has also made available an in-depth analysis of this new legislation. Gaining a thorough understanding of what the various music- and arts-friendly provisions throughout S.1177 could mean for music education over the course of a four-year authorization (and potentially beyond) will be pivotal to NAfME’s efforts to expand nationwide access to music and increase resources to teachers and students.


If you are interested in reviewing a comprehensive analysis of all bill provisions which relate directly or indirectly to music and arts, please follow the link to NAfME’s new “Everything ESSA” homepage. Should Congress pass this legislation, NAfME will follow up our analysis by beginning the process of working to foster a more inclusive and “well-rounded” regulatory environment, at both the federal and state levels, for purposes of supporting music education under ESSA.

We look forward to sharing news on the Senate vote to come. Meanwhile, congratulations to all on this huge step forward for music education!

Shannon Kelly, NAfME Director of Advocacy and Policy, Center for Advocacy, Policy, and Constituency Engagement, December 2, 2015. © National Association for Music Education (