Tedisco to SED Commissioner Elia: Don’t Bully New York’s Parents & Schools on Common Core Opt-Outs

Assemblyman says Common Core Parental Refusal Act needed now more than ever to protect students, parents, educators and schools from “vindictive” state bureaucrats


Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R,C,I-Glenville) today is calling on New York State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia to stop intimidating New York parents and school districts with threats of pulling funding from schools with high percentages of students who opt out of grades 3-8 Common Core standardized tests -- in essence, telling them to stop trying to “kill the messenger” for their introduction of a flawed system.


On Wednesday, the State Education Department released the results of this year’s Common Core Math and ELA tests and revealed that 20 percent of eligible students statewide refused the tests. In the Capital Region, close to 27.5 percent of students opted out.


“Commissioner Elia should stop bullying New York’s parents and schools because huge numbers of students are opting out of the flawed, developmentally inappropriate Common Core standardized tests. Unless there are real changes made to Common Core, these opt-out numbers will only grow exponentially next year,” said Tedisco.

“Parents have a right to decide their children’s educational futures free of penalty from vindictive state bureaucrats who seem to care more about these over-utilized tests that rob teachers of their innovation as they teach to these tests and children of their love of learning,” said Tedisco.


Tedisco, a former public school special education teacher, is the lead sponsor of the Common Core Parental Refusal Act (A.6025/S.4161), which has bi-partisan support in both houses of the legislature, and would require that school districts notify parents of their rights to refuse without penalty to have their children take the tests.  The bill protects students, teachers, administrators and schools from any state retaliation or loss of funding for opting out of the Common Core tests.


“Now more than ever, the legislature needs to codify into law a parent’s right to refuse these tests and ensure they have a voice in their child’s educational futures when opt-out choices are made,” said Tedisco.