Archive for June 24th, 2005

24th June

First Published in The New York Sun, June, 24, 2005

By Andrew Wolf

The Board of Regents has once again delayed implementation of a key element in the fight to raise academic standards. This was the year that the passing grade for Regents exams was to be restored to 65 from the 55 that was “temporarily” put in place. This was done so that the new requirement that students pass five of the exams in order to get an academic high school diploma could be “fairly” phased in.The board has put off full implementation of this for another three years, opting instead for a gradual phase-in.

To win a New York State academic diploma, students are now required to pass five Regents examinations — five tests in as long as it takes (and New York City schools are required to allow students to attend high school up to age 21), and in as many tries as it takes. When initially adopted, the Regents, to ease in this new, but hardly onerous, requirement reduced the passing grade to just 55. And even the score of 55 does not mean that 55% of the questions were answered correctly — on the math exam, for instance, providing the right answer on just 31% of the questions earns the grade of 55. (more…)