LACKAWANNA COUNTY -- A big change came Thursday in how public education is overseen and regulated in the United States.
President Obama signed what's called the Every Student Succeeds Act that replaces the No Child Left Behind standards that have dominated education for more than a decade.
President Obama signed a law giving up a large amount of control from the federal government when it comes to education.
The Every Student Succeeds Act takes the power from Washington to states and local school districts, for the first time since 2002.
"They're looking to have more local control. We're having our discussions with Harrisburg instead of Washington, D.C. and I think that's a step in the right direction," said Old Forge School District Superintendent John Rushefski.
Rushefski says the big change he sees coming is how success in the classroom is evaluated. It becomes more of a state decision. The feds pushed standardized testing, making sure students met certain achievement levels.
State education officials in Harrisburg are already saying tests won't be the only standards used.
"The problem we ran into was high-stakes testing. You take a test and you graduate. That's not what education should be all about. It shouldn't be coming down to one test because not everyone is a test taker," said Rushefski.
While some school districts and the state are happy with this new legislation, some parents are happy, too, with this new focus when it comes to schools.
"Most kids, when they take tests they get very aggravated. They're not working up to their potential. Most kids know what they want to do. Those tests don't actually measure their ability to do it, so it's not something that should have been done," said Mary Kay Cleveland.
Cleveland has a daughter at Carbondale Area High School. She was picking up her son from Head Start preschool.
The state's response to the new law is also an increased focus on quality early education.
William Kimble says that has been a big help in his family.
"He's 3 years old. Now he can spell his name, write his name. He does more here than I was able to do at home, so I do believe these programs help," said Kimble.
There are critics of the new Every Student Succeeds Act. They don't think it does enough to improve struggling schools.
Here in Pennsylvania, state education officials say there have been meetings with many different groups trying to determine the best approach for the state.