Sit and Stare Policies for Students Who Refuse Tests in New York State.

I am not sure if this is a policy that is being encouraged by the NY State Education Department, but at least 10 School Districts that I know of in Long Island and Upstate NY require that any child who refuses to take a state test, including those as young as third grade, must sit in the room with students taking the tests and stare at the blackboard for the entire time of the test. They are not allowed to read, not allowed to draw, not allow to use computers. This punitive approach to test refusal has not been challenged in the courts… yet, but you can be sure it will be. It epitomizes the atmosphere of intimidation and coercion that surrounds high stakes testing in New York State, especially since the tests have been aligned with Common Core Standards.