Thursday, April 4, 2019
Dear Board of Regents,
I have copied below an email I sent to you almost a year ago, after the 2018 ELA assessment's computer-based testing failures and most significantly, students working for hours on one portion of the test.
Sadly, after a year has passed, the 2019 ELA Assessment shows nothing has changed. Commissioner Elia promised better assessments and provided talking points that many districts across New York State used to convince families that the tests had value, were improved, and computer-based testing was the future. Yet, all of those promises fell flat. Nothing has changed, including Elia's call in 2018 to hold Questar accountable for its problems last year.
At what point do we hold Commissioner Elia responsible for these continued problems with the state assessment system after months of promises? Nothing has changed.
Of most importance, but not getting enough attention, is the continued issue of students, especially our youngest learners, taking hours to complete the ELA Assessment. As I noted in the email from April of 2018, NYSED and local districts should be compiling data in regards to how long each student needs to complete the assessments. After another year of students working beyond a reasonable time-frame, I wonder if the leadership of NYSED really wants that data at all.
Some schools still need to complete their ELA assessments due to the CBT delay. I strongly suggest you visit a school during the testing period and witness firsthand the impact of the current assessment system.
Feel free to reach out to me to discuss my concerns further.
Here is the email I sent last year: