The NY Testing Program includes standardized testing in ELA (English Language Arts), Math, and Science. ELA and Math tests are administered annually in all New York State public schools to students in grades 3 through 8. There is also a New York State Science Test administered annually in all New York State schools to students in grades 4 and 8.
The New York state tests were developed by Pearson and align with Common Core State Standards. There are different versions of both tests at each grade level. These tests are used to evaluate and compare schools across the state. Score reports also serve to inform teachers and parents about a student’s weaknesses and strengths. Moreover, score data is carefully considered for admissions to selective public schools and independent schools.
NOTE: For spring of 2021, because of Covid, the NY Testing Program is modified. For students in grades 3 through 8 will be given the state tests for English, math and science, however they will look quite different from previous years’ assessments.
The exams will be shortened and remote students will not have to take them. The shortened version means that students are required to take one section of the English test and one section of the math test. Students in grades four and eight who take the science section will only have to take the written portion.
However, if the school wants to offer the second sections of these assessments they may do so, but scores on those sections will not be collected by the state.
The schedule for the NY Testing Program in grades 3-8 for Spring 2021 includes:
- English – April 19-29
- Math – May 3-14
- Science for grades 4 and 8 – June 7-9
Schools may administer the NY Testing Program at any time within each window.
Students who attend school remotely and would like to take the assessments need to contact the administration of their local school to make arrangements.
Parents continue to have the right to opt their child out of standardized tests. Should you wish to do so, please speak with your child’s principal.
Format and Content
The ELA exams within the NY Testing Program align with Common Core State Standards to test reading, writing, language, speaking and listening. They measures students’ attainment of skills such as understanding story events, drawing conclusions, making predictions, identifying the main idea, using vocabulary strategies, identifying supporting details, identifying point of view, evaluating ideas, understanding features that distinguish genres, and using figurative language to interpret text. The test also presents a wide range of genres and informational texts, which are presented in the chart below.
Question types include multiple-choice, short-response, and extended-response. The test is administered over 3 days and testing is untimed.
The Mathematics exams within the NY Testing Program align with Common Core State Standards. The content varies depending on grade level and includes the following topics: number sense and operations, measurement, statistics, probability, algebra, and geometry.
Question types include multiple-choice, short-response, and extended-response. The test is administered over 3 successive days with testing comprised of three books. The testing is untimed.
- Fourth graders need to have a ruler and a protractor.
- Calculators are not permitted for grade 3-5.
- Sixth graders must have the exclusive use of a 4-function calculator with a square root key or a scientific calculator for books 2 and 3.
- Seventh and Eighth graders must have the exclusive use a scientific calculator for books 2 and 3.
The Science exams within the NY Testing Program align with Common Core State Standards. For grade 4, Part 1 consists of 30 multiple-choice questions, and Part 2 consists of 13 open-ended questions. Students have unlimited time to complete the questions. For grade 8, Part 1 consists of 45 multiple-choice questions, and Part 2 consists of 40 open-ended questions. Again, students have unlimited time to complete the questions; they are also permitted to use of a calculator. The content varies depending on grade level and includes the following topics: living vs. nonliving things, plants, animals, genetics, ecology, matter, energy, forces, astronomy, meteorology, water, erosion, process skills, geology, chemistry, physics, measurement, classification/sorting, magnetism, electricity, and inclined planes.
After the test, and often not for several months, parents receive a Parent Report that summarizes their child’s performance. This report includes a scaled score, a performance level, and an overall state percentile rank. The scaled score is determined by the number of points your child earned on the test. A performance level is then assigned based on the scaled score. There are 4 performance level which include NYS Level 1, NYS Level 2, NYS Level 3, and NYS Level 4. The overall state percentile rank compares your child’s score to the rest of the students who took the same subject area test that particular school year. Percentile ranks are reported on a scale of 1-99.
2018-2019 School Year:
- ELA Test – April 2-4, 2019 (paper-based testing)
- Math Test – May 1-3, 2019 (paper-based testing)
- 4th and 8th Grade Science Performance Test – May 22-31, 2019
- 4th and 8th 8th Grade Science Written Test – June 3, 2019