Streams

closing city schools creates a problem with state exams

Thursday, January 27, 2011 - 01:37 PM

My story:

When asked about the decision to close city schools because of the snow — something that's only happened nine times since 1978 — Bloomberg was, at first, matter of fact about the whole thing. A combination of mass transit delays and road conditions, made this the right decision for “parents, students and staff," he said.

Sitting in the press corps was one of those students impacted by the decision: 12th grader Myles Miller, a regular attendee of mayoral press conference who routinely reports for an assortment of youth-oriented and citizen-journalist web sites.

After Miller and another reporter asked about the regents exams slated to be given on Thursday, the mayor said that exam wasn't a factor in deciding whether to keep schools open.

“That’s not one of the things that went into our decision making process at all,” said Bloomberg. “The three things are safety, practicality and the economic impact” of parents having to miss a day of work.

Black, the schools chancellor, said 46,000 students were scheduled to take the history and regents exams, 22,000 were lined up for the geometry regents exam, and another 28,800 students were scheduled for the reading, science, chemistry and physics regents exams. The exam is run by the state, which has a policy of not rescheduling it for students who miss their tests.

The next opportunity to take the tests are in June. Which is somewhat problematic, Black acknowledged for "a few hundred" students who were set to graduate this January. "And in the past, they don't make any exceptions," Black told reporters after the press conference.

Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott said the city is talking with state education officials to find a solution for those who couldn't take the regents exams.

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Comments [1]

Pocahontis2

I wonder why the Regents Exams weren't a factor in making the decision to close schools.

Don't you think it strange that the two people (Bloomberg and Black) who say they are concerned about education decided to put thousands of young peoples lives in jeopardy by postponing these exams?

The safety of the students will be in jeopardy come June when double the amount of students have to take these missed exams in the same amount of space. This is not good for testing conditions or student success. Is this practicality?

What about the economic impact? On whom or what? Long term or short term?

Since this would be the second time that Mayor Bloomberg has cancelled school during Regents Week, he knew from experience what measures he could have taken to ensure that the " students wouldn't be left behind."

Testing sites could have been set up in each borough for students and teachers who live in the city to report.

This was a real state of emergency and should have been handled as such.

Come June, what will happen if these missed exams occur on the same date and at the same time as other exams that the students have to take.

Submitted by,

Food for Thought

Jan. 29 2011 09:25 PM

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