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NYSUT statement on announcement state will seek federal testing waiver

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Mon, Jan 25th 2021 08:05 pm

New York State United Teachers on Monday applauded the announcement the state Education Department will seek a federal waiver of grades 3-8 and high school testing requirements amid the ongoing challenges students and educators statewide are facing related to the coronavirus pandemic.

“In a year that has been anything but standardized, it’s the right move to seek this waiver to cancel this spring’s standardized exams,” NYSUT President Andy Pallotta said. “Educators know their students’ needs and how to maximize their potential. We’re thankful that the department and Regents are taking this step and are here to work them to ensure students can still showcase their hard work this spring in a safe and equitable manner.”

NYSUT released a letter last week to the department and Board of Regents outlining concerns with administering both the grades 3-8 and Regents exams during a tumultuous year for educators, students and their families. More on the union’s advocacy can be found here.

“Interim Commissioner (Betty A.) Rosa, Regents Chancellor (Dr. Lester) Young and the board are putting students’ physical, social and emotional well-being first with this request,” NYSUT Executive Vice President Jolene T. DiBrango said. “We’ve heard from countless educators across the state who know that canceling this year’s exams is in the best interest of their students. We urge the federal government to hear their voices and grant this request.”    

New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.

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