C&I

Curriculum and Instruction

Description of New York State Learning Standards

At the approach of the twenty-first century, the Board of Regents approved a new set of learning standards for all students in New York State. They represent the core of what all people should know, understand and be able to do as a result of their schooling. As such, these learning standards are to form the basis for a re-vision of education in New York.

With this re-vision, students may expect an intellectually powerful education no matter where they live; in which teaching, assessment, and the provision of supports for learning are to be closely linked; and in which schools and parents share the same high expectations of youngsters.

Learning standards have two primary dimensions. Content standards describe what students should know, understand and be able to do. Performance standards define levels of student achievement pertaining to content. However, the teaching and learning which takes place in between is the heart of the matter. This addresses opportunity to learn standards and is, perhaps, the most crucial element of the entire process.

Classroom teachers have a tremendous challenge. They must bring reality to the teaching and learning process in order to assure that all of their students will perform at higher levels. They also have a wonderful opportunity for both professional and personal growth. Numberless occasions are available for teachers to really examine their instructional practice, to share what it is they do each day with their students, to work in collaboration with other teachers and students and, thereby, to grow in their understanding of the craft of teaching.

Background information:

  • July 1996 - The New York State Board of Regents approves Learning Standards in seven subject areas
  • April 1996 - The New York State Board of Regents approves a policy to phase out Regents Competency Tests and requires Regents examinations beginning with students who enter grade 9 in September 1996.
  • December 1995 - The New York State Board of Regents develops an overall plan for raising standards for all students. This plan consists of the following three strategies:
    1. Set higher learning standards and revise the assessment system.
    2. Build the capacity of schools to support student learning.
    3. Develop an institutional accountability system with public reporting.
Last Updated: April 29, 2009