The New York Board of Regents passed new rules Tuesday to tighten regulation over private schools, requiring them to begin the process of meeting state standards by December 2023.
The regulations require private schools to offer an education “substantially equivalent” to that at public schools, and the board voted unanimously and without debate.
The state board action comes after years of complaints that thousands of children are graduating from ultra-Orthodox Jewish schools lacking basic academic skills, including the ability to read English.
The rules apply to all of New York’s 1,800 nonpublic schools but would have the greatest impact on the ultra-Orthodox schools, called yeshivas, some of which provide rigorous religious instruction but little or no teaching in secular subjects like English, math, science and history.
The schools could face the loss of public funding if they are found to be failing to provide children with a basic nonreligious education.