In May, Penncrest students, along with other students in Pennsylvania’s public schools, will participate in Keystone assessments in Algebra, Biology, and Literature.
For current 10th-grade and 11th-grade students, Keystones continue to be an important part of our district’s compliance with the Every Student Succeeds Act. Test results give our students, teachers, and school valuable information about our performance and our growth in meeting state standards.
For the Class of 2022 and beyond, the recent signing of Act 158 expands the number of pathways to meeting state graduation requirements. Students will continue to be required to sit for Keystone end-of-course exams, and, for most students, Keystone exam performance will remain the primary pathway to meeting state graduation requirements.
From the Pennsylvania Department of Education:
Students can meet the statewide graduation requirement by:
- Scoring proficient or advanced on each Keystone Exam - Algebra I, Literature, and Biology.
- Earning a satisfactory composite score on the Algebra I, Literature, and Biology Keystone Exams. The passing composite score will be available in August 2019.
- Earning a passing grade on the courses associated with each Keystone Exam, and satisfactorily complete one of the following: an alternative assessment (SAT, PSAT, ACT, ASVAB, Gold Level ACT WorkKeys), advanced coursework (AP, IB, concurrent enrollment courses), pre-apprenticeship, or acceptance in a 4-year nonprofit institution of higher education for college-level coursework.
- Earning a passing grade on the courses associated with each Keystone Exam, and pass the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute (NOCTI) or the National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS) assessment in an approved Career and Technical Education concentration.
- Earning a passing grade on the courses associated with each Keystone Exam, and demonstrate readiness for postsecondary engagement through three pieces of evidence from the student’s career portfolio aligned to student goals and career plan. Examples of evidence will include ACT WorkKeys, SAT Subject tests, AP, IB and concurrent coursework, higher education acceptance, community learning project, completion of an internship, externship or co-op or full-time employment.
Your students are well-prepared to succeed on their Keystones. I have populated the ‘Keystone Exam’ link on the Penncrest website with current information for students and families about the exams, including the testing schedule, state documents, and important information about personal electronics and testing protocols. I have visited classrooms to review exam information directly with students, and teachers will continue to work with students as exam day approaches.
As has been the case in the past, students in good academic standing who take a Keystone course (Algebra I, Biology I, or 10th-grade English) and who sit for the Keystone exam in that subject may exempt themselves from the course final exam. Students should discuss their exemption options with their teachers.
We will certainly update you as the state makes information available to us. Thank you for your support!
Sharon A.D. Sweeney