Harrisburg, PA, Thursday, March 19, 2020— AFT Pennsylvania President Arthur G. Steinberg, on Thursday, issued the following statement after it was announced that the Pennsylvania Department of Education is cancelling statewide assessments, often referred to as “standardized tests”:
“I applaud Pennsylvania Education Secretary Pedro Rivera and Governor Tom Wolf for making the difficult, but correct choice to cancel statewide assessments for the rest of the school year. This continues to illustrate just how serious COVID-19 is and how serious the Commonwealth’s government is taking it.
“With schools empty and attempting to ensure all students receive the services to which they are entitled, the specter of standardized tests was never far from the minds of educators. This move provides much-needed relief of at least one level of pressure on the schools and students of Pennsylvania.
“The example that the Pennsylvania Department of Education is setting with their actions and exceptional transparency and responsiveness should be followed at the federal level—this gives educators, students, and parents capacity to keep themselves and their families safe and healthy without fear of administrative reprisal.”