The U.S. Department of Education (USDE) has approved New York State’s request for a waiver from the provisions of federal law that currently require students who take Regents exams in mathematics when they are in seventh or eighth grade to also take the state mathematics assessment, New York Education Commissioner John B. King, Jr. today announced. The waiver will effectively end the “double-testing” of these students, beginning with the spring 2014 assessments.
USDE’s approval of the waiver “means the end of double-testing for nearly 60,000 New York students,” says King. “The Regents, the Chancellor, and I are committed to reducing the amount of time students spend on tests and eliminating any tests that don’t inform instruction or improve student learning. Our successful waiver request is an example of New York’s commitment to smarter, leaner testing.”
The waiver means teachers will not have to prepare students in seventh and eighth grade who are receiving instruction in Algebra I for multiple end of year assessments; districts will now be allowed to administer only the Regents Examination in Algebra I (Common Core) to these students. This provision also applies to seventh- and eighth-grade students who plan to take the Regents exam in Geometry.
Other than two high school history Regents exams, all required state tests— including all grades 3–8 assessments; secondary-level exams in English, math, and science; alternate assessments for students with disabilities; and annual assessments for English language learners (ELLs)—are required by federal law. New York has not created any additional tests as part of its Common Core implementation.