New York eyeing changes to Every Student Succeeds Act

Local News

New Yorkers spoke. The state education department listened.

After receiving plenty of public feedback, New York is proposing changes to the Every Student Succeeds Act.    

“No longer can districts be pitted against families,” said Susan Hasenauer, Assistant to the Superintendent for the Brockport Central School District.

She focused on a rule that would’ve put school districts in a difficult spot at Tuesday’s school board meeting.

As part of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, districts with consistently low standardized test participation rates would’ve been forced to move money meant for helping students and use it convincing parents to make their children take the state evaluations.

Exams which many Brockport students have been avoiding recently.

“In the past three years, we have not come close to that participation rate,” said Hasenauer.

The goal is 95%. Brockport schools have averaged between 60-70% the past three years in grades 3-8. 

Under the old provision, they would’ve been two years away from potentially facing financial ramifications.

“We would be focusing on participation and testing versus creating an environment where instruction and student achievement was the sole purpose,” said Hasenauer.

Under the newly proposed changes, they don’t have to worry.

The state is still encouraging schools to aim for the 95% rate but won’t financially punish districts for falling short.

“They actually listened to the stakeholders and they’re making a choice that truly is in the best interests of the children,” said Hasenauer.

A 30-day public comment period regarding the proposed changes is set to begin October 3rd.

The state education department anticipates the revised amendments will be presented at their December Board of Regents meeting. If approved, it would take effect on December 26th.

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