NY Board of Regents attack educational standards again
In their latest strike at education standards, the state Board of Regents this week set the bar for passing the once-prestigious Regents Exams at just a 50% score for another year. The excuse is that these kids didn’t get the teaching they should’ve during COVID — but the impact is to make a high-school Regents diploma less meaningful.
Not coincidentally, it will reduce parental fury over the learning lost as schools closed during COVID.
We strongly suspect this is why the State Education Department, which answers to the Regents, is keeping the full results of last year’s 3rd-through-8th grade state exams under wraps: In past years, school-level results were publicly available by now, but the SED has ordered the data kept under wraps with no clear timeline for when parents can learn the truth.
As the Empire Center’s Ian Kingsbury notes, the news is likely to be grim, as national exams show massive COVID learning loss. Yet New Yorkers need “to be armed with a full picture of the current condition of education in the Empire State” before they vote this November.
Notably, results from the 2019 Regents Exams helped justify the Regents’ vote to crack down on yeshivas that don’t try to teach basic English and math skills, but still collect taxpayer cash.
The missing info might well suggest that many regular public schools that pretend to teach are nonetheless failing children every bit as badly. The record suggests the Regents and SED want to hide that grim news.
As we’ve noted before, the Regents turned against standards after Carl Heastie became the Assembly speaker and appointed a board majority. And he won the speakership after winning the approval of the state teachers union — which doesn’t want parents getting any bad news about their kids’ achievements.
The same union (and its potent NYC local) is all-in for Gov. Kathy Hochul to win on Election Day. That should be reason enough for every New York parent to vote for Lee Zeldin instead.