Greetings to Middle School Students & Parents/Guardians:
Why am I receiving Keystone Information?
All students in the graduating classes of 2023 (and beyond) are required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) to take the Keystone Exams in the areas of Algebra, Literature, and Biology for the purposes of federal accountability. These exams are end-of-course tests designed to measure proficiency on state standards in those three content areas.
The following students have been identified to take the Winter Keystones:
- Newly enrolled students who took one of the Keystone “trigger” courses (e.g., Algebra I, Biology) in another Pennsylvania public school and did not participate in the Keystone Exam in May 2022 at their former school
- Newly enrolled students that took one of the Keystone “trigger” courses in a Pennsylvania private school during the 2021-2022 school year in grades 8-10.
- Newly enrolled students who took a similar Keystone “trigger” course from an out-of-state school during the 2021-2022 school year, or the student took a state exam, and either did not achieve proficiency or did not provide confirmation of a proficient score.
If your student took Algebra I, 10th Grade English (Literature), and/or Biology last year at Manheim Township during the 2021-2022 school year, he/she was identified to participate in the May 2022 administration. However, our records indicate that your student did not take the Keystone Exams during the designated test dates in May 2022. Therefore, your student is required to test during the administration of the 2022 Winter Keystone Exams, scheduled to take place in December 2022.
When will the Keystone Exams occur?
The Middle School will be administering the Algebra 1 exam on Friday, December 9th. This exam will be administered during the normal school day; there will be no adjusted schedule. Each exam consists of two modules that will be administered on the same testing-day.
- Algebra l: Friday, December 9, 2022
Where do students report for testing?
Testing for the Algebra 1 exam will occur in room 148 and begin promptly at 7:25 a.m.
What is the daily schedule for students who are testing?
Testing students will report to school at the “regular” time on all testing days and go directly to room 148. Testing will begin promptly at 7:25 a.m. in Room 148. When finished, students will return to class.
How can my child prepare for the Keystone Exams?
- Encourage your child to take time to review the Pennsylvania Online Assessment links available for the Keystone Exams. Public access is available by using the URL available to review all state assessments, Keystone Exams, PSSA, and CDTs at https://wbte.drcedirect.com/PA/portals/pa.
- Students already have the DRC Insight application available on their iPads, look for a dark blue icon with a white circle ‘DRC INSIGHT’. The application serves as both the training and testing site.
- To access both training areas, click on the actual words ‘Online Tools Training’ below the icon and the DRC INSIGHT Online Assessments Tutorials highlighted below Online Tools Training in yellow. Additional helpful information about online tools is accessible on this Keystone Online Tools video.
- Both training links are paramount for a successful online testing experience.
- Access the Schoology Course.
Other Important Information about the Keystone Exams:
- Students must arrive on time.
- The exams will be taken on the students’ iPads. Students will need to bring their iPad fully charged on all testing days. Students should also bring their chargers just in case they need to plug in.
- All students are permitted as much time as they need to complete each module.
- Students may choose to bring their own calculator (calculator must be “cleared” before the testing session begins).
- Possession of other electronic devices (cell phones, smartwatches, etc.) could result in the test being invalidated. If any test material is compromised, students/families could be responsible for the cost of replacing compromised test items.
Student Participation – Religious Exclusion
The PDE only allows a student’s exclusion from taking the Keystone Exams if the Parent/Guardian has determined the Keystone Exam conflicts with their religious beliefs. Parents/Guardians have the right to submit a request for their student(s) to be excluded from testing by using the following procedures:
- Contact by email or call Christine Resh, Principal, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-560-3111 to schedule a review of the test(s) from November 16 to December 2, 2022.
- Write a request letter or request email for the exclusion for building receipt by Monday, December 5, 2022. (Additional information will be provided after document review.)
- Write the request to the attention of Dr. Robin Felty, Superintendent. The request must include the student’s full name, grade level, and scheduled Keystone subject(s) and the reason the student will not participate in the Keystone Exam(s).
- Include a parent/guardian signature, address, email address, and phone number.
Please note that the student who does not participate will still be required to meet one of PDE’s Pathways to Graduation. Students who do not take the Keystone Exam(s) will need to meet all of the requirements of either Pathway 3, 4, or 5 in order to graduate since they will not be eligible for Pathways 1 or 2.
If you or your student have any other questions or concerns about the Keystone Exams, please contact Dr. Christine Resh, MS Principal, at email@example.com or 717-560-3111.