April 17, 2013
By Stephanie West
New York NY – Parents in New York City and across NY State are boycotting and protesting this year's state standardized tests which started April 16, 2013. Parent groups 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 city administration and the teachers that they do not have permission to administer the tests to their 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 give these tests."
“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.
The parent groups opposed to these state tests claim that the educational system is being dismantled by businessmen and politicians, not educators. Parents generally want schools to include a rich curriculum where teachers can teach and children will have a true pathway to successful careers and college.