- John B King Jr.NYS Commissioner of Education
Regents Scores should not determine High School Graduation! Shift to a student-centered and portfolio-based model for our schools
We, the students of New York City and New York State deserve to have a quality student-centric education, not a test-centric education.
In New York State, only 74% of high school Students graduated in 2011, while only 60.9% graduated in New York City. In low-need districts (districts with many resources to spare) an overwhelming 94% of students graduated, compared to high-need districts (places where poverty is blatant)where only 65% of students graduated. Of the youth who did not graduate, 72% were Hispanic and Black. Along with having boring test centered curricula developed to prep students for regents exams, the severe ties regents exams have with promotion policy(graduation), are leading to ridiculously low graduation rates and disproportionately impacting low income and black and latino communities. In order to graduate with a regular diploma 5 regents exams must be taken from particular subjects areas and passed with a 65%. English Language Learners, as well as Individualized Educational Program Students are also taken away from their right to a fulfilling education, and instead forced to prep for exams which are unfairly much more difficult and stressful to them. These exams should not be limiting high school students access to a quality education or a High School Diploma!
Our right to be humans who are creative, intelligent, and critical is being forgotten.
By launching this campaign we are pushing for a quality student-centered education. We no longer want to force teachers to teach to a test. We want relevant and student-centered curriculums that actually benefit students not test prep companies. As testing is now being centered around the new Common Core Curriculum, the stakes if students fail these exams remain high for both teachers and students.
It is also the right for the student body to choose whether or not to partake in a curriculum which consists of preparation for standardized testing and not their actual growth. It is time we voice our concerns and demands for actual change, and not sit idly to unnecessary stress or more regurgitative knowledge. We believe that portfolio based assessments that are designed collaboratively among students, teachers, and parents which are aligned to the consortium rubric, nurture the skills needed to succeed in college and life. Already studies show that in 2011, 86% of African American and 90% of Latino male graduates of Consortium schools were accepted to college, where as national averages were only 37% and 43%, respectively. The retention rate at their colleges was also high in respect to the national average. It is obvious that the changes that are being made to our school system should not mean the continuous use of testing to support “failing” students, but instead the shift to a student-centered and portfolio-based model that give everyone a chance to succeed in life.
Anyone, who believes in quality education should be tailored for young creative minds not robots, should join us in this effort to reclaim our educational system.
Want to be involved with our future meetings and organizing?
Snap a Picture of yourself holding a sign, stating why you think Regents are limiting our actual growth, with thehastags #UpWithStudents #DownWithRegents and #NYSU
Learn more about our campaign here!
Tweet us @StudentsUniteNY! #UpWithStudents #DownWithRegents #NYSU
- NYS Commissioner of Education
John B King Jr.
We demand regents should not be mandatory for students to graduate, as it limits actual growth for students. We believe that portfolio based assessments that are designed collaboratively among students, teachers, and parents which are aligned to the consortium rubric, nurture the skills needed to succeed in college and life.
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