State Should Keep Teacher Literacy Test

Is it wrong to expect New York’s teachers to pass a test a high school senior should be able to pass?

Apparently, it is.

Several years ago, the state created four tests that prospective teachers must pass before getting a teaching license. Among them is the Academic Skills Literacy Test, designed to measure the reading and writing skills of those who want to be teachers. The state Board of Regents is expected to eliminate the test. It is the wrong move.

There may be merit to claims the tests need to be redesigned. Some of the education professionals whom the Associated Press spoke with said there are too many multiple choice questions, too many questions can have several correct answers and those who took the test on a computer said the computer format was confusing. Those are all issues that can be fixed without scrapping the test entirely.

Scrapping the literacy test sends a message that New York doesn’t care if the teachers hired in school districts throughout the state can read and write better than the students they are teaching. That is the wrong message to send.