ALBANY, NY (WENY) – Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives sent a letter to the New York State Department of Education (NYSED) asking that they provide assessment data for third grade through eighth grade.
The lawmakers asked for their English Language Arts and Mathematics assessment data and a distinction between what NYSED calls preliminary and ‘final’ assessment data. Representative Joe Sempolinski (R-NY23) said this data is important for policymakers to have so they can better understand how to improve students learning environments.
“We just want transparency. That’s what it comes down to, so that we as policymakers at the federal level can do what’s best for children and their education, that’s our goal,” Rep. Sempolinski said.
He adds that policymakers also want this information to address concerns about learning loss from the pandemic. According to the National Assessment of Education Progress, average scores in 2022 declined five points in reading and seven points in math compared to 2020.
The school districts in New York State have $9 billion in funding from the American Rescue Plan to address learning loss. And in order for policymakers to address how these funds are being spent, Congressman Sempolinski said they need the assessment data. He added the data is also important for parents, teachers, and local school districts.
“When you have that data, you can make the decisions that are gonna be best for the kids and spend each education dollar more effectively and more efficiently and make sure it’s really doing the job that it’s supposed to do,” he said.
We reached out to the New York State Department of Education, but did not receive a response before this publication.