No need for finals when there are Regents

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Mid-June is the king of academic deception. No more than a week after finals ended, your schedule once again became cluttered with exams, but these weren’t just regular final exams: they’re Regents level final exams.  This repetition doesn’t make any sense and the requirement that teachers must give classroom finals should be reconsidered.

In practice, the requirement leads to some teachers using a previous Regents as a final to ensure students can ace the Regents. Thus, rather than concluding the course with both a comprehensive final and a direct Regents, students end on the same note twice.

Moreover, the conditions under which teachers administer these finals don’t reflect the actual Regents. Three hours for a Regents exam that can be done in two is not the same as thirty-five minutes for thirty-five questions. This difference in procedure only succeeds in making students complete their Regents more quickly and sit in a silent room for longer; it doesn’t give them a useful simulation.

However, some teachers do administer difficult finals,  explaining: “This is an honors class, and the Regents are far too easy.” Some AP classes in THHS also have a Regents, namely AP U.S. History and AP World History. Unlike their Honors counterparts, however, studens in these classes should have a final. AP classes operate on a level of study far above that of the Regents. A past Regents simply cannot serve as the final. Most teachers have a pre-AP exam the week before that class’s respective AP test; this should be counted as the final for the class.

This would be an acceptable solution for all parties: students have one less final and teachers avoid pointless end-of-year grading. Freeing teachers from grading finals also gives them additional time to conclude courses in June without rushing.

Additionally, rather than burdening Regents teachers and their students with an additional test, administrators should simply eliminate those in-class finals.

Let the Regents count as the culmination of the year’s topic, because that is exactly what it is meant to be.