Monday, April 15, 2013
Sample opt out letter and press release of NYC opt out parents.
Here's a sample opt-out/refusal letter you can send with your child tomorrow.
Here's a report from the press conference by NY1.
NYC PARENTS BOYCOTT HIGH STAKES STATE TESTS
Media Contact: Jane Hirschmann, 917 679 8343
Jane Maisel, 917 678 1913
3rd THROUGH 8TH GRADE PARENTS IN OVER 33 SCHOOLS REFUSE TO ALLOW THEIR KIDS TO BE TESTED
Parents in New York City as well as across NY State are mobilizing for a large scale boycott of this year's state standardized tests which start tomorrow. Parents assert that based on the numbers of concerned parents attending meetings and signing petitions, there would have been thousands more participating in this boycott if the NY State Education Department and the NYC DOE hadn’t created such an atmosphere of fear and intimidation.
Many children across the city will not be taking part in the state tests this April. Parents from 33 schools have instructed the administration and the teachers that they do not have permission to administer the tests to our children. Parents are determined to end the use of high-stakes testing which are now tied in with New York State’s new experimental Common Core curriculum.
According to Chancellor Dennis Walcott of the Department of Education children are expected to do poorly on this year's tests because these tests are based on an as yet unused curriculum. “Why put our children through this exercise? This is surely education malpractice. You can also call it child abuse,” said Marco Battistella. We know our rights as parents and we have an obligation to protect our children. None of the top performing private schools (where Board of Regents children have attended) give these tests. Could that be why there are no consequences for their opting out?
Evelyn Cruz, a parent of a 6th grader reports that, “I have watched as my son who once loved school, now comes home complaining about all the test prep and emphasis on testing. He doesn’t want to go to school anymore. We parents are coming together to tell the Mayor and the Chancellor that despite attempts at fear and intimidation we say, ‘No more!’”
We have had enough of our children doing work that is developmentally inappropriate and focused on drill and kill. We see our children losing their love for learning. Something is very wrong when nine and ten year olds are so stressed out that they are crying, losing sleep and dreading going to school. A 4th grade parent reported that her son is saying that he must be ‘stupid’ because he is having difficulty with material that is at the ninth grade level. Test anxiety makes learning impossible.
“We have had enough of the endless test prep that comes with high-stakes testing tied to promotion decisions, teacher evaluations, school report card grades, closing of schools,” said Cynthia Copeland, a parent.
Parents have had enough of our educational system being dismantled by businessmen and politicians, not educators. We insist on a rich curriculum where teachers can teach and children will have a true pathway to successful careers and college.