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Student Opportunity Act

FY24 Timeline, Guidance, and Other Resources


The Student Opportunity Act requires each district to create an evidence-based plan for reducing persistent disparities in achievement across student groups. Plans must be submitted for the Commissioner's review on a three-year cycle, with annual progress updates submitted in subsequent years. Please review the FY24 SOA Plan Guidance Materials for more details on submission requirements. New 3-year SOA Plans are due April 1, 2024.

Details on the FY24 guidance and timeline for developing new 3-year SOA plans, and other resources available to districts appear below:

FY24 SOA Plan Guidance


  • December 2023 – March 2024
    • FY24 3-Year SOA Plan Guidance released — December 2024
    • FY24 3-Year SOA Plan Overview Webinar — January 9, 2024
    • FY24 3-Year SOA Plan Addendum Guidance released for priority districts — Winter 2024
    • Data collection window opens in GEM$ (with technical guidance) — Winter 2024
    • SOA Plan supports (Office Hours and priority district outreach) — Ongoing
    • Submit all questions to Karen Johnston at
  • April – July 2024
    • Plans Due on April 1, 2024, by 11:59 p.m.
    • DESE reviews SOA plans and provides feedback — April through June 2024
    • DESE publicly posts all SOA plans — July 2024

Other Resources and Supports

  • Student Outcome Comparison Tool. To help districts easily access the data needed to develop a thoughtful plan, DESE has created a new, publicly available Student Outcome Comparison Tool. This tool will enable districts to review data across student groups for critical indicators to pinpoint where disparities in learning experiences and outcomes are most prominent.

  • Additional Data Tools. For further data analysis, districts are encouraged to visit DOE profiles and Edwin Analytics. To learn more about customized MCAS and ACCESS dashboards for your district, please reach out to our partners at Open Architects (Student Opportunity Act Support).

  • SOA Office Hours. Our SOA Team is once again offering ½ hour consultations to support districts with overall plan development. Use this link to schedule a time to meet with us. Districts can also email questions to the SOA Team at .

  • Consultations for Priority Districts. A team from DESE will reach out directly to priority districts to provide direct assistance in completing the FY24 3-Year SOA Plan addendum.

FY22 SOA Plan Amendment Review and Feedback Process

Districts' plan amendments were reviewed against statutory requirements described in the 2019 Student Opportunity Act and against the guidelines DESE provided to districts for engaging in a meaningful plan development process and submitting a well-documented SOA plan. These recommendations and guidelines were designed to ensure that districts' SOA plans would effectively communicate to all of the Commonwealth's stakeholders (i.e., districts' and schools' local stakeholders, the state legislature, the broader education community, and the general public) that we are making strong collective efforts to close opportunity gaps for student groups—particularly students with disabilities, English learners, students of color, and students from economically disadvantaged communities—and are setting ourselves up to successfully address them through the implementation of evidence-based programs and strategies.


  • Week of May 23: Districts receive feedback on their FY22 SOA Plan Amendments
  • May 23–June 30: SOA Office Hours. Schedule a 20–30 minute consultation with one of our SOA team members. Districts can also reach us by email at any time at .
  • Thursday June 30: Due date for submission of required and optional changes to SOA plan amendments
  • On or before July 15: Plans are posted publicly on DESE's SOA Website

Please see the FY22 Student Opportunity Act Plan Amendment Review and Feedback Process and FY22 Student Opportunity Act Plan Amendments: Additional Detail on Review Criteria documents below for more information.

FY22 Guidance Materials and SOA Plan Amendment Template
FY21 Guidance Materials and SOA Plan Template

Last Updated: March 19, 2024

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
135 Santilli Highway, Everett, MA 02149

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


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