New York cancels history Regents exam following Buffalo shooting
The New York State Education Department announced on Tuesday that it would cancel a statewide standardized exam on U.S. history and government for high school students following the mass shooting in Buffalo.
“Our experts determined that there is content on the new Regents Examination in U.S. History & Government (Framework) that has the potential to compound student trauma caused by the violence in Buffalo, which created an unexpected and unintended context for the planned assessment,” the department said in a tweet about the decision to cancel the test, which was scheduled for June 1.
While the content is “educationally sound,” the department said the recent shooting changed the context of some of the test’s materials, according to a letter from Education Commissioner Betty Rosa.
The tests had “already been printed and packaged for shipment to schools,” Rosa said, adding that “it is not possible to produce a test with different content or to make modifications to the developed assessment in the short time period before the administration date.”
“We will work together to ensure that goodness and compassion will always triumph over ignorance and hatred,” the letter added.
The decision to cancel the exam came after a mass shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo last week left 10 people dead and three injured.
The 18-year-old accused of carrying out the shooting, Payton Gendron, allegedly targeted the Tops Friendly Markets location because it was in a predominantly Black neighborhood. Eleven of the 13 people victims in the attack were Black.
Erie County Sheriff John Garcia has called the shooting a “straight-up racially motivated hate crime.”
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