The NYSSG was established in 2012 to recognize high school graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in one of more languages, in addition to English.
The intent of the NYSSB is to encourage the study of languages, identify high school graduates and biliteracy skills for employers, provide universities with additional information about applicants seeking admission, prepare scholars with 21st century skills, recognize the value of foreign and native language instruction in schools and affirm the value of diversity in a multi-lingual society.
In 2016, the New York State Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBEWL) presented its recommendations to the New State Board of Regents for students to earn the NYSSB.
In the Spring of 2016, the NYSSB was adopted and officially rolled out to districts statewide. Many states, including New York, award a Seal of Biliteracy in formal recognition of such scholars.
In January of 2018, the enlarged City School District of Middletown's (ECSDM) NYSSB application was approved by the New York State Education Department (NYSED). Full implementation of the NYSSB occurred in 2019 with 9 graduates receiving the NYSSB.