The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was signed into law December 2015 and replaces No Child Left Behind (NCLB) in federal education law. ESSA shifts much of the focus of educational decision making back to the states. The Alaska Association of School Librarians (AkASL), with support from the American Association of School Librarians and EveryLibrary, is advocating for the inclusion of “effective school library programs” in the ESSA implementation plan to be drafted by the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development (AK DEED).

We need your help to accomplish our goal! On this page, you will find more information about ESSA, AkASL’s, and AASL’s efforts, and upcoming advocacy opportunities.

Advocacy Events & News

Are there ESSA events and initiatives in your community? Share them with the community on our Facebook page. To add them to this webpage, email them to

AkASL Produced Documents

policy-recommendations-regarding-school-library-programs: Letter written by AkASL and sent to AK DEED ESSA Coordinator and Commissioner of Education.

ESSA Superintendent Letter: Written by AkASL and sent to Alaska Superintendents on Sunday, October 30, 2016


AkASL ESSA Working Group

  • Deborah Rinio, AkASL Secretary & Librarian, Hutchison High School, Fairbanks
  • Sheryl Wittig, AkASL President & Librarian, Auke Bay Elementary, Juneau
  • Ann Morgester, District Librarian, Anchorage School District
  • Katie Baxter, AkLA Advocacy Committee Chair, Library Director, Kodiak Public Library
  • with support from John Chrastka, Founder and Executive Director, EveryLibrary