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Over the almost 50 years of Hecht-Calandra act being law, we now have decades of research detailing the problems with high-stakes testing as the sole measure of student ability. Yet Hecht-Calandra and the exam it authorizes continue to be New York State law.

Denying the harm in using a single multiple-choice exam as the sole measure of a child’s academic worth with the mountains of scientific evidence we now have is similar to denying global warming.

No other district in the nation uses a single exam for screening a public high school. No red state or GOP-led State has a single-measure entrance exam.

Replace Hecht-Calandra act to allow modern psychometric testing practices that aren’t subject to the above issues.

Psychometrician testifying to NYS Legislature on the SHSAT exam

How you can help

We have a hard time getting NY Assembly and Senate elected members to give on-record opinions on the test.  Call your Assembly and Senate representatives to ask for their opinion on the test.  And let us know their opinion.

Watch powerful testimony on the SHSAT and its effect on the mental health of 12 year-old students

Posts, News & Articles

Interested in learning more? We’ve collected 187 articles on Hecht-Calandra, SHSAT, and related topics.

NYC, suspend high-stakes admission tests

Yet for years, neither the mayor nor the Legislature — nor anyone in Hunter College leadership — has taken the necessary action to overhaul a system that bases admissions to the most coveted schools on just a test, the SHSAT ...
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Will the coronavirus mean the end of the SHSAT? I hope so

I believe the exam should have been eliminated years ago, but this difficult moment in history would be the perfect opportunity to see how a more inclusive set of admissions criteria could work for these specialized high schools without administering ...
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The legal battle over high school entrance exams

The points made in this article cannot be overstated. The Hecht-Calandra Act may be an unknown, obscure law to many Americans, including New Yorkers. But this law may be the small crack in the armor that allows conservative legal groups ...
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Brown’s Lost Promise: Segregation & Affirmative Action In New York City Specialized High Schools

New York City is one of the most diverse cities in the United States. However, its schools remain some of the most segregated. The crown jewel of the City’s public education system, Specialized High Schools, are among the nation’s top ...
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New City Council Resolutions Push for Overhaul to School Admissions Process

Repeal of the 1971 Hecht-Calandra Act and transferring control of admissions to New York City’s specialized high schools to the City. The Hecht-Calandra Act made the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test the single metric that can be used to admit ...
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New bill seeks to repeal state law governing admissions to NYC’s specialized high schools

“We’re not calling for any policies, we’re just saying the state should stay out of it,” said Assembly Member Charles Barron, a co-sponsor of the legislation introduced Wednesday. The previous bill never made it to the Senate, where Sen. John ...
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Lawmakers, advocates launch new effort to repeal state specialized high school law amid racial justice protests

The new effort, spearheaded by the advocacy group Teens Take Charge, comes on the heels of sweeping protests against racial injustice that advocates hope will shine new light on segregation in city schools.“The recent protests really did show all of ...
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A10731: We have a new bill!

This new bill calls for the repeal of the Hecht-Calandra Act. At present, there are nine specialized high schools in New York City, one of which - Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts - ...
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SHSAT AND SEGREGATION by Micha Hervey

6-minute student short documentary "SHSAT AND SEGREGATION" by teen student Micha Hervey. Micha did an excellent job, and though our vote maybe biased, would get our nod for an Emmy if we had one ...
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