Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Passed House amended (10/21/1999)

Academic Achievement for All Act (Straight A's Act) - Allows up to ten States a certain type of flexibility in combining and using specified Federal elementary and secondary education formula program funds for State education priorities and programs, in exchange for being held accountable for meeting, in a five-year period, certain performance goals which they propose.

(Sec. 3) Allows not more than ten States to opt to enter into such a performance agreement with the Secretary of Education, under which provisions of law relating to specified eligible programs shall not apply to the State, with certain exceptions.

Requires such States to provide parents, teachers, and local schools notice and opportunity to comment on any such proposed performance agreement prior to submission to the Secretary.

Includes under the terms of such agreements requirements relating to: (1) use of such funds to improve student achievement; (2) an accountability system; (3) performance goals and measures, and student academic achievement data; (4) fiscal responsibilities; (5) civil rights; (6) private school student and staff participation; (7) State financial participation; and (8) annual reports.

(Sec. 4) Lists such eligible programs, under various provisions of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), the Department of Education Appropriations Act of 1999, the Goals 2000: Educate America Act, the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act of 1998, and the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act.

(Sec. 5) Sets forth requirements relating to: (1) within-State distribution of funds; (2) local participation; and (3) limitations on State and local educational agency administrative expenditures.

(Sec. 8) Requires performance reviews at mid-term and at the end of the five-year period of the performance agreement. Authorizes termination of the agreement if student achievement in the academic categories significantly declines for three consecutive years during the five-year term. Requires termination of the agreement and State compliance with program requirements in effect at the time of termination if a State has not substantially met the performance goals by the end of the five-year term. Authorizes reductions of State administrative funds for States that have no progress by the end of the term.

(Sec. 9) Allows States that have met at least 80 percent of their performance goals to apply for renewal of performance agreements for an additional five-year period.

(Sec. 10) Directs the Secretary annually to set aside sufficient funds from the Fund for the Improvement of Education under ESEA to grant achievement gap reduction rewards to such States. Requires a performance reward to equal at least five percent of funds allocated to the State during the first year of the performance agreement for programs included in the agreement. Makes a State eligible to receive a reward if, over the five-year term of the performance agreement, it reduces by at least 25 percent the difference between the percentage of highest and lowest performing groups of students that meet the State's definition of proficient, with such reduction occurring in at least: (1) two content areas, one of which must be mathematics or reading; and (2) two grade levels.

(Sec. 11) Directs the Secretary to make the annual State reports available to specified congressional committees.