If the shoe fits: New York needs to restore its statewide literacy test for teachers

If the shoe fits: New York needs to restore its statewide literacy test for teachers

Once again, the Left demonstrates its total disregard for scientific method and its penchant for pandering to “protected classes.”

On Tuesday by the New York State Board of Regents reached a decision to banish the statewide Academic Literacy Skills Test (ALST) given to teachers. The test, which the state began administering in 2013 to candidates for teacher certification, was a means toward weed out those with sub-par reading and writing skills.

But in December 2016, the National Council on Teacher Quality found a problem with the test. Namely, white candidates were outperforming minority candidates. While 64% of whites were passing the test on the first try, the same was true for only 46% of Hispanics and 41% of blacks.

Supporters of the decision to eliminate the test say the exam is discriminatory. Leslie Soodak, a professor of education at Pace University who served on the task force that reviewed the test, told the Associated Press (via the Poughkeepsie Journal), “We want high standards, without a doubt.” If that’s true, why scrap a test that helps ensure them?

Another quote by Soodak later in the piece reveals her true motivations: “Having a white workforce really doesn’t match our student body anymore.” But what difference does the color of a teacher’s skin make, especially if the teacher reads and writes at a substandard level?

Kate Walsh, the president of National Council on Teacher Quality, is quoted as saying that blacks and Latinos don’t score as well as whites on the literacy test because of poverty and a legacy of racism. But it’s not the questions on the test, a sample of which you can find here, that are a problem. It’s liberal educators who refuse to accept the truth because they find it disquieting.

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy has written for The Blaze, HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.


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