2018-06-20 / Front Page

Education Council Calls On Mayor To Save SHSAT

The Community District Education Council 26 of the city Department of Education in Bayside released a resolution on June 21 calling upon Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, Chancellor Richard Carranza, and the New York State Legislature to vote against removing, limiting or changing the admissions criteria, such as the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT), for admission into the specialized high schools of New York City, and to “stop the assault on the standardized objective admissions criteria for the specialized high schools.”

CDEC26 said in the resolution that replacing the current standardized objective SHSAT criteria with subjective criteria “could lead to inequities in the selection process at the specialized high schools.”

The resolution highlighted that “because of the significant numbers of students that District 26 sends to the specialized high schools, this proposed plan will disproportionately negatively impact the students and families of District 26 who are trying to break their own cycles of poverty and elevate into the middle class through sacrifice, hard work and determination.”

They added that the plan to remove the standardized objective criteria from the specialized high school selection could lead to other issues, such as “admitting students into rigorous academic programs for which they are not adequately prepared and may place them in a position where they do not have a realistic chance to succeed.”

And that “replacing the current standardized objective admissions criteria for the specialized high schools with subjective criteria may lead to the deterioration of the quality of the student body and the specialized high schools as educational institutions in the City of New York.”
The resolution suggested that in order to “broaden admissions to the specialized high schools, the city should instead focus on improving the quality of education and instruction in all grade schools and middle schools in all five boroughs.” And they further suggested the city “should instead offer expanded and free high quality SHSAT prep courses that are geographically accessible to all middle school students throughout the city.”

In sum, the resolution stated the “proposal of removing the standardized objective SHSAT as the criteria for admission to the specialized high schools and replacing it with unspecified subjective criteria would undermine the noble aspirations of the American dream, would diminish the quality of diversity to which these schools aspire and would negatively impact the students and families of District 26 and others throughout New York City who have achieved and continue to seek to achieve admission thorough hard work, sacrifice and determination.”

Community District Education Council 26 is located at 61-15 Oceania Street, Bayside. For more information, visit www.CDEC26.org.

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