Monday, January 20, 2014
Sit and Stare Policies for Students Who Refuse Tests in New York State.
I am not sure if this is a policy that is being encouraged by the NY State Education Department, but at least 10 School Districts that I know of in Long Island and Upstate NY require that any child who refuses to take a state test, including those as young as third grade, must sit in the room with students taking the tests and stare at the blackboard for the entire time of the test. They are not allowed to read, not allowed to draw, not allow to use computers. This punitive approach to test refusal has not been challenged in the courts... yet, but you can be sure it will be. It epitomizes the atmosphere of intimidation and coercion that surrounds high stakes testing in New York State, especially since the tests have been aligned with Common Core Standards.
Posted by Mark Naison at 4:18 PM
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I am beyond appalled at the audacity at which these adults make these decisions that will be experienced as deeply humiliating/shaming to students whose parents "opt out". This alone - just this decision - irrespective of the reasons why a student must sit and do NOTHING for hours over the course of DAYS... clearly tells me that, for the adults who've made this edict, it is about winning through dint of force at all costs. These adults have abdicated their solemn responsibility to ensure that kids be treated with respect. If this is a war, these adults just put children in front of them to take the bullets. The adults should ALL be clearly, unambiguously shown that their "idea" = CHILD ABUSE. If I were a parent in any of those districts, I would let them know that IF my child were segregated in that manner *for one test* THEN I would file criminal and civil charges against them ALL.
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