Bill to delay Keystone Exams unanimously passes House
HARRISBURG, Nov. 23 – State Rep. Mark Longietti, D-Mercer, voted today to delay the implementation of the Keystone Exams until the 2018-2019 school year.
"The State Board of Education made Keystone Exams a graduation requirement without input from the legislature and it is clear we need to reexamine and rethink that requirement," Longietti said. "This bill will not only delay implementation of that requirement until 2018-19, but it will also require the Department of Education to investigate alternatives to a graduation requirement and report back to the legislature. Additionally, it ensures that no student is excluded from vocational-technical education or elective courses, like Art and Music, due to supplemental instruction related to Keystone Exams."
Longietti noted that a number of area school districts, including school officials from Reynolds School District, expressed concern about how Keystone Exam requirements were keeping students from enrolling in vocational-technical education.
Senate Bill 880, which passed the Senate in June, would delay the implementation from the 2016-17 school year that current law calls for. Current law would require passing scores on Keystone Exams in Algebra I, Literature and Biology as a condition of graduation. If a passing score is not achieved after two attempts at the exam, a project-based assessment is required.
S.B. 880 now goes to Governor Tom Wolf for his signature.