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June 22, 2001

Council urges rejection of two bills that would weaken school standards

The Business Council is urging lawmakers to reject two bills that would weaken the state's educational system by lowering certain standards for high school students.

The first bill (A.9053/Green) would exempt students enrolled in a Career Education Program from certain Regents examinations.

In a memorandum of opposition, The Council said it disagrees with this bill's implication that these students are not capable of meeting standards set for all students.

The second bill (A.9052/Brodsky) would direct the commissioner of education to develop alternative assessments to Regents exams.

This bill is unnecessary because the current system ensures that alternative assessments meet strict standards, The Council said in a legislative memo.

Regents examinations should remain the focus of assessing high-school students' achievement, The Council argued in its legislative memo, because they are a good measure of what high school students have learned. Moreover, they measure student achievement against New York's standards, which ensures that New York's schools graduate only educated students.