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Open Letter to Private School Parents Regarding Substantial Equivalency Regulations

To: New York’s Nonpublic School Parents

Today I write to share with you an urgent message of equity in our children’s education. A substantially equivalent education has been guaranteed to every child in New York state by Section 3204 of Article 65 of the New York State Law Code for over 100 years. This means that students in nonpublic schools must be supplied with at least the same education that is guaranteed to public school students. Basics in math, history, and English must be taught.

The Board of Regents is now considering regulations to support this statutory requirement. These regulations are basic. They require a periodic assessment to ensure that all schools teach essential subjects such as math, English, science and social studies and that teachers are competent at the most basic level to teach. This is NOT about the details of the curriculum or allowing the Department of Education to dictate lesson plans. And contrary to what you may have heard, this is NOT about a loss of privacy for our children. …


Barbra Rothschild

Parent to children in private school and a believer that all children deserve an education that prepares them to be independent and thoughtful citizens.

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