NEW YORK — Supporters and critics of high-stakes standardized tests are squaring off at a New York City conference on education.

American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten said Monday that New York state's rollout of tests aligned with the rigorous Common Core standards was "a debacle."

Just 31 percent of New York students in grades 3 through 8 passed the 2012 tests in math and English. New York was one of the first states to align its tests with the Common Core standards.

New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott said students will do better moving forward.

Walcott said New York deserves credit for implementing the harder tests because "otherwise we would be having this debate next year."

Walcott and Weingarten spoke at the Education Nation conference hosted by NBC.