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DUMBER BETTER: POLS

April 26, 2004 | By CARL CAMPANILE

Powerful state lawmakers are considering drafting legislation to scale back the use of Regents exams as the only measure to obtain a high-school diploma, The Post has learned.

The heads of the education committees of the Assembly and Senate are scheduled to draft a report on the policy that requires high-school students to pass five different exams to get a sheepskin - considered the toughest graduation requirements in the nation.

The report follows a series of hearings they conducted last year on the state policy.

Most of the people testifying at the hearings opposed the use of the Regents exams as the sole measure determining whether a student graduates.

Such legislative intervention would be political dynamite - coming on the heels of Mayor Bloomberg's new policy of eliminating social promotion in the third grade by linking promotion to results on standardized test scores.

It would also have state lawmakers taking the unusual step of attempting to overrule the Board of Regents, whose members are appointed by the Legislature.

"A decision on promoting students from grade to grade should not be based solely on standardized exams or a series of standardized exams," said Assembly Education Committee Chairman Steve Sanders (D-Manhattan).

Sanders stopped short of saying what he and Senate Education Committee Chairman Steve Saland (R-Poughkeepsie) would agree to jointly propose a bill, because they've yet to discuss the issues in detail.

Saland, while supporting high standards, said legitimate concerns have been raised about whether a graduation policy based on the results of "one-size-fits-all, multiple exams" was in the best interests of all high-school students.

"If I didn't think there were issues that warranted a review, I wouldn't have held the hearings," Saland said.

Some of the testimony came from city high-school students, teachers and principals who were previously allowed to use major research projects - called portfolios - as part of the criteria to determine promotion rather than using Regents exams.

But state Education Commissioner Richard Mills eliminated that exemption by ruling that all high-school students must take the Regents tests that cover English, math, science, and world and American history.

Red Alert!
Let's Opt Out of the April 2014 NYS Tests

Parents can refuse to allow their child to take the State high stakes tests. Hand in this letter to your principal [other formats: .pdf .odt .doc]. En Español: [otros formatos: .pdf .odt .doc] Send your child to school and ask that an alternative activity be planned for him/her during the 6 days of testing.

Information for Parents who want to Opt Out:

Feel free to duplicate these flyers and give them to other parents!

We also have a magazine explaining Common Core, High Stakes Testing, and InBloom to parents. Varios artículos de esta revista fueron traducidos a Español.

Opt Out New York
New material to support the April Boycott.
Please share this Powerpoint!
Developed by a Long Island parent.


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Did You Know?
Did you know that charter schools in New York City enroll fewer students who qualify for free lunch and fewer homeless students?

Music Video: "Not on the Test"
Produced by: Public School Test Records and Grammy Award-winner Tom Chapin

produced by Naava Katz Design