Dear Colleagues,
Betty A. Rosa
This week, the Board of Regents acted on a series of emergency regulations to allow for exemptions to diploma requirements associated with the June 2021 and August 2021 Regents Examination administrations. With the COVID-19 crisis still affecting the State of New York and students having varied levels of in-person instruction, the Board and the New York State Education Department (NYSED) are taking necessary steps to provide essential flexibility for the State’s students, families, and educators.
These include actions to cancel the August 2021 Regents Exams and, should the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) deny NYSED’s waiver request, only four of the June 2021 Regents Exams will be administered; only Session 1 of the Grades 3-8 English Language Arts (ELA) and Math Tests will be required; and only the one-session Written Test component of the Grades 4 and 8 Science Tests will be administered.
NYSED continues to engage with USDE to find the best path forward in offering state assessments for the children of New York. In order to inform these discussions, we are engaging with stakeholders across the state to gain insight on the local approaches to student assessment. The regulatory amendments advanced this week provide fairness for our students; however, we remain hopeful that USDE will provide the necessary waivers to allow our educators to engage in the important work of fostering a safe and healthy learning environment for each child in New York State.
The emergency regulations became effective on March 16, 2021 and will be presented for permanent adoption after publication in the State Register and expiration of the 60-day public comment period.
Below, you can find details on other announcements and resources from NYSED:
  • Statement From Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr., the Board of Regents and Commissioner Betty A. Rosa on Regents Appointments
  • Board of Regents Acts to Adopt Revisions to State Learning Standards for Languages Other Than English
  • Commissioner Rosa and Attorney General James Take Action to Support Students Experiencing Homelessness
  • Statement From Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr., the Board of Regents and Commissioner Betty A. Rosa on the Rise in Violence Against Members of the Asian American Community
  • Teaching in Remote/Hybrid Learning Environments Program
  • NYSED Warns of Phishing Scam Targeting Licensed Professionals
  • SUNY and CUNY Enrollment Resources
  • NY Project Hope
  • NYSED Announces New York State Nominees for Federal Green Ribbon Schools Program
Sincerely,
Betty A. Rosa
Commissioner
Statement From Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr., the Board of Regents and Commissioner Betty A. Rosa on Regents Appointments
Earlier this month, Regents Elizabeth S. Hakanson and Luis O. Reyes were re-elected to the Board of Regents. We also welcomed Regent Ruth Turner and Regent Aramina Vega Ferrer who were elected to the Board of Regents by the New York State Legislature.
We are honored and excited to work with these esteemed colleagues and the entire Board of Regents to ensure that every student in New York has access to a high-quality education, regardless of where they come from, where they live, or where they go to school. Find more information about the appointments to the Board of Regents here.
Board of Regents Acts to Adopt Revisions to State Learning Standards for Languages Other Than English
World languages
This week, the Board of Regents acted to adopt revisions to the New York State Learning Standards for Languages Other Than English (LOTE). The revisions will align the standards with high-leverage practices and update them to represent what students should know and be able to do in the languages and cultures which they study. The full learning standards may be found on NYSED’s website.
NYSED also presented regulation changes to rename the learning standards from LOTE to “World Languages.” Public comment on the proposed changes will be accepted through May 31.
Commissioner Rosa and Attorney General James Take Action to
Support Students Experiencing Homelessness
NYSED and the Office of the Attorney General released guidance to assist local education agencies in their obligations to students experiencing homelessness to help ensure that these children are connected to education and other supports. While the number of homeless students has likely increased due to the COVID pandemic, identifying children experiencing homelessness has become more difficult because many schools across the state are delivering instruction remotely.
To ensure that children experiencing homelessness receive equal access to education, LEAs are encouraged to reference the resources provided for assistance, strategies, and best practices related to identifying and enrolling homeless students.
Statement From Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr., the Board of Regents and Commissioner Betty A. Rosa on the Rise in Violence Against Members of the Asian American Community
Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr., the Board of Regents, and Commissioner Betty A. Rosa expressed their deep concern about the rise in violence against members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. The Board of Regents and NYSED condemn these acts of violence and the hatred that drives them. We will not be delayed or deterred in our work to lift up every one of New York’s 2.6 million students, confident in the knowledge that the way to a better world is through education, respect, and compassion.
Teaching in Remote/Hybrid Learning Environments Program
Teaching in Remote/Hybrid Learning Environments program
NYSED’s Teaching in Remote/Hybrid Learning Environments (TRLE) program is facilitating new online professional learning opportunities through our Level 1 Center partners that can be attended by any educator in New York at no cost. Please visit our TRLE website and event calendar for more details. Be one of the first to learn about new professional learning opportunities and join our listserv.
NYSED Warns of Phishing Scam Targeting Licensed Professionals
Phishing Scam Targeting Licensed Professionals
NYSED recently warned licensed professionals in New York State about a scam involving telephone calls from individuals posing as NYSED Employees or law enforcement officials to defraud and extort victims.
The scam is targeting such licensed professionals as physicians and pharmacists, and is seeking the professional’s social security number and an immediate bond payment under the guise that the professional’s license has been suspended and payment is required to reverse the suspension and avoid further charges.
NYSED will never telephone or fax any individual to request a bond fee or payments related to an ongoing investigation of professional misconduct. If you receive such a phone call, please hang up immediately and report it to the proper law enforcement authorities.
SUNY and CUNY Enrollment Resources
college student studying
A college degree can change the trajectory of one’s life and improve career success. However, even before the pandemic, students from low-income households or those from underrepresented groups had just a 10-25 percent chance of earning a degree.
We recently sent information to you about SUNY’s ‘Big Dreams, Small Step‘ campaign to provide assistance to high school students who are at risk of being left behind this year — and who stand to benefit the most from a college degree.
The City College of New York (CUNY) is also providing additional support for students to complete their applications, including several application workshops this month. Explore options with your students by reading about the 25 CUNY campuses across the five NYC boroughs and the thousands of CUNY degree choicesVisit the CUNY website to get to know the campuses and learn more about the application process.
NY Project Hope
NY Project Hope
If you are feeling stressed, isolated, scared, anxious, sad, or angry during this trying time, emotional support is available. Trained crisis counselors are available at the NY Project Hope COVID-19 Emotional Support Helpline to provide a listening ear, information, and referrals to a vast array of community resources. The helpline is open 7 days a week from 8 AM to 10 PM.
To meet increased need, NY Project Hope has expanded its crisis counseling program in 12 counties that have been highly impacted by COVID-19, including Dutchess, Erie, Nassau, NYC (all boroughs), Orange, Rockland, Suffolk, and Westchester. NY Project Hope has contracted with several local agencies in these 12 counties that will now provide COVID-19 related crisis counseling in their respective communities. By expanding the NY Project Hope crisis counseling program in these areas, more New York residents will be able to receive the emotional support they need, along with local resources and referrals from trained crisis counselors who know their community.
NYSED Announces New York State Nominees for
Federal Green Ribbon Schools Program
Green Ribbon Schools
NYSED recently honored three schools as New York State Green Ribbon Schools. These schools are New York’s nominees for the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS) program distinction. The award recognizes schools that reduce environmental impact and costs; improve the health and wellness of schools, students, and staff; and provide effective environmental and sustainability education. This year’s honorees are the Magnet School for Environmental Studies and Community Wellness (PS90) in Brooklyn, Scarsdale Middle School in Scarsdale, and New Roots Charter School in Ithaca.
Honorees of the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools competition will be announced in a ceremony held in Washington D.C. this fall. Congratulations to the honorees!