Parents, elected officials clash over proposal to eliminate high school admissions test

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK -

Tensions flared Friday as the state Assembly and schools chancellor discussed a proposal to get rid of the specialized high school admission test.

Groups on both sides of the debate rallied outside City Hall in response to mayor and chancellor's proposal to phase out the SHSAT and replace it with different admissions criteria.

One group of parents and leaders vehemently oppose the proposal, saying getting rid of the test would be discriminatory against Asian students.

Meanwhile, inside City Hall Park, public advocate Jumaane Williams and activists Kirsten John Foy and Kevin McCall rallied with other members of education equity. They aim to increase the opportunities at specialized high schools for other minority students.

On the steps of City Hall, Assemblyman Charles Barron and council member Inez Barron rallied to get rid of the test altogether, saying they support the proposal which would offer admission to students who score just below the cutoff point.

If approved, the chancellor's proposal would go into effect in September, and over the next three years, phase out the SHSAT altogether.

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