New York State Education Department announces January 2022 Regents Exams canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic

Posted at 1:36 PM, Dec 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-21 13:39:33-05

NEW YORK (WKBW) — The New York State Education Department has announced the January 2022 High School Regents Examination Program has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The state said the cancellation applies to all Regents Examinations scheduled for the January 2022 Regents Examination period. No decisions have been made regarding the June and August 2022 administrations of Regents Exams or any other state assessment programs.

Educators, school staff, communities, and families have taken painstaking efforts to ensure a safe and healthy school year. Given the unpredictable nature of the pandemic, the recent acceleration in COVID-19 infections, and continuing upheaval the virus has caused in schools across the state, this decision is the right one. New York's students will continue to have access to high-quality coursework while allowing districts to prioritize the health and safety of our school communities.
- Board of Regents Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr.
New York set a daunting record last week with more COVID-19 cases reported in one day than ever before. Once again, the January Regents Exams cannot be safely, equitably, and fairly administered across the state. We will continue to work with our schools, districts, and stakeholders to ensure they have what they need to provide academic, social and emotional, and mental health supports for our students.
- State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa

Due to the cancellation, NYSED will request the Board of Regents approve modifications to the assessment requirements that students must meet to earn high school diplomas, credentials, and endorsements. NYSED said the modifications apply to all students completing a secondary-level course of study or make-up program in January and are scheduled to participate in one or more of the January 2022 Regents Examinations.

NYSED will also request the Board of Regents adopt emergency regulations regarding the assessment requirements students must ordinarily meet to earn a diploma. You can find that information below:

Under the proposed emergency regulations, students who are planning to take one or more Regents Examinations during the January 2022 examination period at the conclusion of a course of study or make-up program shall be exempt from the requirements pertaining to passing a corresponding Regents Examination to be issued a diploma. To qualify for the exemption, the student must meet one of these requirements by the end of the first semester of the 2021-22 school year:

  • Be enrolled in a course that would ordinarily culminate with a January 2022 Regents Examination and earn credit for such course of study;
  • Complete a make-up program to earn course credit; or
  • Be prepared to take a required Regents Examination to graduate at the end of the first semester.

NYSED said it will issue additional guidance in early January 2022 and it will address the following topics:

  • Safety net options
  • Mastery
  • Honors
  • Technical endorsements so that schools may determine which diplomas to grant to their graduates

The New York State United Teachers issued the following statement Tuesday:

Given the unevenness of this school year with the pandemic still ongoing and the acute social-emotional needs of our students, canceling the January Regents exams is the right choice. We thank Commissioner Rosa, Chancellor Young and the Board of Regents for recognizing that our educators are still assessing their students, preparing them to receive their diplomas and setting them up for success after graduation without this round of state exams.