NYC DOE Scrapping Plan to Eliminate Dinosaurs and Unpleasant Topics From Citywide Tests


In response to strong criticism from parents (and maybe widespread ridicule everywhere), topics including dinosaurs, divorce, birthdays, dancing, and creatures from outer space, are no longer at risk of extinction on citywide exams. Those topics were among 50 that the department submitted for exclusion to companies vying for the job of revamping the city’s tests. But NY1 reports that the DOE’s chief academic officer, Shael Polakow-Suransky, announced on Monday that the department will drop the Brave New World-like list but “will continue advising publishers to be sensitive to student backgrounds and avoid unnecessary distractions.” All of the topics were targeted in the first place because they might “evoke unpleasant emotions in the students.” This reversal of policy ensures that another generation of youngsters will be shackled with the trauma of an exam question about creatures from outer space and/or dancing.