August 22, 2019

Much work left to fix flawed and invalid state tests

Source:  NYSUT Media Relations
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Caption: FILE PHOTO: Among the many union leaders out in force to protest the flawed tests on the steps of the State Education Department in April: from left, Mike Silvestri, Schenectady Federation of Teachers; Seth Cohen, Troy Teachers Association; Natalie McKay, Schoharie Teachers Association; and Juliet Benaquisto, Schenectady Federation of Teachers. Photo by El-Wise Noisette.

ALBANY, N.Y. Aug. 22, 2019 — New York State United Teachers released the following statement today on the State Education Department’s release of grade 3-8 state test results:

“While it is better that test scores increased slightly, we must not paper over the fact that the state’s standardized testing system — and the way it determines student proficiency — remains badly broken. Too many students are forced to take tests that are too long and include questions that are not developmentally appropriate. Invalid scoring benchmarks continue to mislabel children. And the rush to adopt computer-based testing has been a complete failure for the second year in a row.

“The State Education Department has made little effort or progress when it comes to fixing years long problems with these tests. Officials must correct the testing system before our children sit for exams next spring.”

Earlier this year, NYSUT launched the Correct the Tests campaign to raise awareness of the serious issues with the grades 3-8 ELA and math tests and demand state action to fix these flawed, invalid tests that are harmful to New York students.

In April, NYSUT released the Correct the Tests report, which detailed numerous problems with this year’s round of state standardized tests, despite assurances from the State Education Department that past failures would not be repeated.

In May, delegates at the union’s annual Representative Assembly called on the state Board of Regents to direct the state education commissioner and Education Department to finally make the necessary changes to fix the 3-8 testing system, as well as the New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT).


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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