Tuesday, June 7, 2016

16 Schools Where Students Opted Out of Tests Got Penalized by State - Windsor Terrace - DNAinfo New York

16 Schools Where Students Opted Out of Tests Got Penalized by State - Windsor Terrace - DNAinfo New York:

16 Schools Where Students Opted Out of Tests Got Penalized by State


BROOKLYN — The state has penalized 16 high-performing city schools — potentially costing them each up to $75,000 in grant money — because of their exam opt-out rates, DNAinfo New York has learned.
These schools were on track to win recognition from the state as“Reward Schools" — an annual honor that makes schools eligible to apply for grants — but were not included in the list because they failed to meet a 95 percent participation rate on the exams, state education officials confirmed. 
“While U.S. Department of Education [USDE] guidelines allow states to impose sanctions on districts specifically for failure to meet participation requirements [of the tests], including the withholding of state funds, New York State has not taken such action against any district or school,” State Education Department spokeswoman Jeanne Beattie said.
“However, under New York’s flexibility waiver approved by USDE in 2010, a school must meet all applicable participation rate requirements to be designated as a Reward School and therefore eligible for a grant.”
The move is at odds with public promises not to penalize schools, teachers or students in any way for choosing to opt out of the controversial tests.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in August: "I don’t believe there are sanctions for opt-outs. And parents, at the end of the day, parents are in charge and parents make the decisions."
And Public Advocate Letitia James, this April, wrote a letter to families, stating: “I want to remind you that, as parents, you have the right to opt your child out of this exam with no consequences to you, your child, or your child’s school."
And, in a bid to calm parents' concerns about the test, the state temporarily discontinued using the tests to evaluate teachers and lifted time limits on the test for all students.
The state declined to release the full list of schools it shut out of the Reward Schools list.
However, DNAinfo learned of several schools that were dropped in Brooklyn’s District 15 — which spans from Boerum Hill to Park Slope and Sunset Park and has among the 16 Schools Where Students Opted Out of Tests Got Penalized by State - Windsor Terrace - DNAinfo New York:


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