Kings Park school board drafts resolution against state testing

The Kings Park Board of Education plans to draft a resolution in opposition to "high-stakes testing" and other state education mandates, following several area school districts.

Board members plan to read a draft of the resolution at its Tuesday meeting, Superintendent Susan Agruso said.

Trustee Diane Nally called on the district at a late October meeting to draft a resolution, after hearing concerns from parents about Common Core standards and testing.


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"I have heard from community members concerns about what their children are going through, and I do realize that things need to slow down," Nally said. "To make a resolution just seems to make sense to me."

Agruso suggested at last week's meeting that the board model its letter after one sent by Michael Mensch, chief operating officer of Western Suffolk BOCES to state Education Commissioner John B. King Jr.

Mensch's letter calls for slowing down the implementation of new exams and a "three-year moratorium on tying APPR [Annual Professional Performance Review] scores to high-stakes testing," among other suggestions.Agruso, who will draft the resolution, said it will include "recommending some changes in the assessments so that they're shorter and students have sufficient time to finish," she said. "It will talk about some proposed changes to the APPR [Annual Professional Performance Review], and there will be some statements in there about concerns involving the data collection."

Debbie Danley, a founding member of the parents group Kings Park Advocates for Education, said her sixth-grade son will take "well over 30 tests" this school year that "don't measure specific curriculum that was taught to him or averaged into his grade."

Danley said the tests are "taking precious time out of the classroom. . . . Our teachers are more than capable of assessing students' needs without having these strict regulations."

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