Chapter 4 is the section of the State Board of Education Rules and Regulations that deal with Academic Standards and Assessment
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 1.Elimination of the requirement that strategic planning be conducted through a State- prescribed time frame and State-prescribed format to provide flexibility in how schools approach strategic planning. Retains planning requirements for : educator induction, educator professional development, special education, gifted education, student services, and early childhood education.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 2.Establishes State-specific Pennsylvania Core Standards as the Commonwealths academic standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts. Augments current standards with Pennsylvania Core Standards for Reading and Writing for both Science and Technology and History and Social Studies.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 3.Strengthen the existing graduation requirements for the 2014 -2015 school year through the 2016 -2017 school year. Course completion and Grades Demonstrate proficiency or above in the State academic standards in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science and Technology and Environment and Ecology, and in each of the state academic standards for which there is not a state assessment.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) Students will demonstrate proficiency on the appropriate Keystone Exam, a local assessment or a comparable AP or IB exam. Keystone Exams will not be incorporated into the students final grade. (Removal of the 1/3 rd rule). Beginning with the 2016 – 2017 school year, the culminating graduation project will be removed as a graduation requirement. Students who opt out of the state assessments for religious reasons will be required to participate in a project-based assessment to demonstrate proficiency for graduation.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 4.Beginning in the 2018 – 2019 school year a determination of proficiency in Composition and Language Arts will be required. In 2019 – 2020 Civics and Government will be added to this list. These requirements are contingent on the availability of Keystone Exams for Composition and Civics and Government as well as the related project based assessments and the validation of locally aligned assessments.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 5.Provides for five Keystone Exams to be developed for voluntary use, subject to funding. 2016 – 2017 Geometry 2017 – 2018 U.S. History 2018 – 2019 Algebra II 2019 – 2020 Chemistry 2020 – 2021 World History
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 6.Provides conditions for a student who does not demonstrate proficiency on a Keystone exam to enter into a project-based assessment. Student must attempt the Keystone Exam twice. The student must complete supplemental instruction to the satisfaction of the school district.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 7.Allows the chief school administrator to grant waivers to the state graduation requirements on a case by case basis for students who cannot demonstrate proficiency or who face extenuating circumstances. If the district is considering granting waivers to more than 10% of a graduating class they must engage in self-reflection to identify needed improvements to the courses in question. These improvements shall be presented to the Secretary for approval in an action plan.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 8.Provides an alternative pathway for proficiency for career and technical students. In addition to the Keystone exam, validated local assessment or project based assessment CTE students may meet State graduation requirements by demonstrating proficiency on an occupational skills assessment.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 9.Reorganizes the regulations related to the State assessment system to make them more easily understandable to the regulated community.
Final Form Rulemaking (fine tuning) 10.Provides clarity pertaining to the information required to be included on student transcripts. Performance levels, not reporting scale scores, must be reported on student transcripts starting in the 2016 – 2017 school year. The transcript must include the highest performance level demonstrated.