The COVID-19 crisis is deepening the already-enormous gaps in educational opportunity that harm far too many of New York’s children, especially Black and Brown children. The introduction of remote learning has added yet another layer of inequity in educational resources for Black and Brown children. Though the health disparities of the pandemic have been widely publicized, the lack of transparency about educational inequity in our state remains unaddressed. Building a system that provides essential information and shares power with our families is an important and urgent part of the solution.
Families deserve to know their educational rights. We need State Legislators to share information and power with students and their families by passing the Educational Rights Transparency for New York Families Act (S8407/A6179).
Presently, New York’s education laws and regulations are scattered over countless State Education Department and advocacy group web pages. Typically, the information is presented using dense, often-confusing legal language and acts as a roadblock for families in being able to advocate for their children’s educational needs. New York State currently lacks a transparent way of communicating the educational rights that students hold under State law with families.