The New York State Board of Regents is considering scrapping the Regents exam requirement in order to improve the state’s high school graduation rates, student achievement, and college readiness.
“This is not about changing our graduation standards. It’s about providing different avenues – equally rigorous – for kids to demonstrate they are ready to graduate with a meaningful diploma,” said a spokesperson from the board.
Regents exams became mandatory in 1996, however, the exam dates back all the way to 1876. It is one of the oldest achievement tests in American history and has been a rite of passage for high school students in New York for generations.
“I think it will remove a standard that we all have lived by for many years,” says Marilyn Dominick, Co-President of the New York Teachers Association. “That doesn’t mean I’m opposed to change, but show me what the standard is now so it’s fair, equitable and consistent for all of the students in New York State.”