More math opt-outs than ELA in Riverhead


About 15 percent of Riverhead School District’s third- through eighth-graders didn’t take last week’s state-mandated math assessments, officials said Monday, while close to one-third of Shoreham-Wading River students opted out of the test. 

Of 2,235 students in Riverhead, 350 refused to sit for the required math exams, which were administered April 30 to May 2. That’s 133 more refusals than occurred for the early April English Language Arts assessments, assistant superintendent David Wicks said. Seventeen fewer students were required to take the ELA exam than the math test.

Over at the Shoreham-Wading River School District, assistant superintendent Alan Meinster said 389 students refused to take the exams — or 33 percent of the 1,180 students initially expected to take the assessments. That’s about the same number of refusals that occurred for the ELA assessments.

The opt-out movement has been promoted by parents and educators statewide as a way to protest so-called high-stakes testing tied to the controversial Common Core State Standards.

Regional school officials have said they expected as many or more students to refuse the math tests — not only because refusal letters indicated as much, but because parents and students have been even more vocal about the Common Core math curriculum.