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New York State Allies for Public Education has led the successful opt out movement in their state for years. As much as 20% of all eligible students have refused the annual tests in most years, in some schools and districts, a majority of students don’t take the test.
They reacted angrily to the news that the Biden administration plans to require annual testing after Joe Biden publicly promised not to.
NYS Allies for Public Education – NYSAPE
The Biden Administration Fails to Put Children First; NYSAPE Urges Parents to Opt Out
In a recent letter released by Ian Rosenblum, Acting Secretary of Education and former Executive Director of the reformer organization Education Trust NY, the USDOE and the Biden Administration have signaled that testing waivers submitted by the states will be denied this year. Although the ESSA accountability measures will be granted waivers, the insistence on forging ahead with ESSA-mandated student assessments completely ignores the damaging impact that administering state assessments in the midst of a pandemic will have on our children.
Unfortunately, the Biden Administration believes that traumatized children, including those who have yet to set foot in their school buildings since last March, will be best served preparing for and taking standardized tests, even though this will only add to the stress they are already experiencing.
However, parents are not without recourse. New York State parents can, and will, exercise their right to refuse to allow their children to participate in the grades 3-8 state assessments. NYSAPE’s New York State Test Opt Out parent letter can be found here.
NYSAPE applauds the New York State Education Department (NYSED) for announcing “Regents Exams would not be required to meet graduation requirements and to cancel any Regents Exam that is not required by USDOE”.
NYSAPE now calls on the New York State Board of Regents and the New York State Education Department to take immediate action to demand any and all flexibility on ESSA regulations, and provide clear guidance to school districts that they must inform parents of their right to opt out of the state assessments and prohibit any mixed messaging to coerce parents otherwise.
NYSED led by Commissioner Betty Rosa & the Board of Regents are leading the way in putting our children’s needs first.
NYSAPE is a grassroots coalition with over 70 parent and educator groups across the state.