June 24, 2009

New dates for state math, ELA tests

Source: NYSUT Newswire

Teachers and students will face a whole new testing schedule this year for grades 3-8 state assessments in English language arts and math.

The Board of Regents in June agreed to shift the statewide assessments to later in the school year.

English language arts exams will be administered April 26-28, rather than in January. Math will be given May 5-7, rather than in March.

The speedy implementation has prompted some complaints from districts and administrators, many of whom had already set and printed 2009-10 calendars.

Some districts had already scheduled spring break during the week before the new ELA assessment date, meaning students would take the exam the first day back from vacation.

State Education Department officials said the testing could not be shifted any later if scores are to be available before the end of the school year. The Regents agreed that getting test results before the end of the school year is a top priority to help districts make placement decisions and get students remedial services.

The revised testing schedule will mean curriculum changes, especially for math. In late July SED released a detailed guidance memo for the grades 3-8 mathematics testing program so districts can align their mathematics curriculum with the May 2010 administration of the Grades 3-8 mathematics test.

A link to both the new schedule and curriculum changes are available on this page.