(WEST CHESTER) — State Senator Andy Dinniman announced today that the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) will cancel all statewide assessments for the 2019-2020 school year. The cancellation includes the PSSA, PASA, and Keystone Exams.

The announcement comes after Dinniman’s development of a bill, Senate Bill 1095, which sought to end the statewide assessments for the school year in response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).

“The PDE has made a decision which is in the best needs of the students in this unprecedented time, and I fully support it,” Dinniman, who serves as the minority chair of the Senate Education Committee, said. “Any test results coming after long periods of closure, remote learning, and interruptions to classroom instruction are questionable, if not outright invalid, and our true focus should be on students receiving the education they need and deserve in this trying time.”

Dinniman also introduced Senate Bill 1094, which allows school districts that have the capabilities in place to move ahead with online learning. It also calls for PDE to, within two weeks, put in place alternative plans for school districts that may not have online resources available and give school districts the freedom, as with online learning, to put programs into place for the school year.