Middle/High School Principal
Dear Parents and Guardians,
Testing has become an integral component of students’ education at every level. Beginning in April, our elementary and middle school students will be taking the 3-8 NYS Assessments in ELA, Math and Science. To help them prepare for these tests, I want to share with you some important tips for making your child feel as confident and comfortable as possible on testing days.
The importance of reading and writing on a regular basis is one of the largest factors for success on any assessment, regardless of the content area. The more a child reads and writes the more likely they will be to reach their highest potential on any test. Encourage your child to read multiple genres to increase vocabulary development and become familiar with different styles of writing that will help them to become stronger students overall.
Some students get very anxious when tackling standardized tests. While it is important to acknowledge the value of a test, it is equally important to remind them that a test is simply one measure of performance. The more relaxed and prepared a student is about an exam, the more likely they are to perform their best and truly demonstrate their best learning.
There has been much publicity recently about NYS testing and the Common Core. Much of this has been politically motivated and there is a lot of misinformation that is being presented. With that said, we do recognize the concerns you may have about the upcoming testing and want to not only alleviate any fears your child may have, but also any concerns you may have about the use of these assessments in placement or grading.
I want to assure you that we do not use these assessments as a sole determination in any type of program placement. We simply look at them as another measure of performance we have, in addition to many other more valuable measures. Each child is unique and it is important to us that we look at the whole child in school, not how they perform on any single assessment. We certainly do not want any of our students to stay home simply to avoid taking one of these tests for fear of this.
If you have any questions about other ways you can assist your child at home or questions about the testing, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher, principal or reach out to me directly. Thank you for your continued support.