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Urge New York State leaders to decouple Regents exams from graduation requirements


In 2020, 2021, and January 2022, the New York State Education Department (NYSED) and the Board of Regents cancelled Regents exams due to COVID-19 and temporarily changed graduation requirements so that students who had passed all of their courses could earn a diploma without these high-stakes tests. NYSED and the Regents have also added flexibility for students who take the exams between June 2022 and August 2023 to appeal lower scores. These changes came about because of the pandemic, but they also provide an opportunity to rethink the role of Regents exams entirely.

In fact, New York State is an outlier, one of only eleven states that require students to pass exit exams in order to earn a diploma. Even before the pandemic, most states had stopped requiring students to pass standardized tests in order to graduate, in part due to evidence that such exams increase high school dropout rates—particularly for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds—without providing any real benefits.

Add your name.

Tell NYSED and the Board of Regents to permanently decouple Regents exams and graduation requirements so that students who have earned all the required credits do not face meaningless barriers to earning a high school diploma.


Please forward this email to other New Yorkers who may be interested in taking action.

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