Keystones 2023

Posted on April 26, 2023
Categories: News from SDP

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April 26, 2023

Dear School District of Philadelphia Parents and Guardians,

We are writing to inform you that students in grades 8-12 will be participating in the Keystone Exams between May 15 and May 26, 2023.

The Keystone Exams provide critical information about the academic progress of your student(s) and are also a high school graduation requirement in Pennsylvania. Individual student scores from these assessments help teachers identify a student’s strengths and areas of growth in order to support their learning. Keystone Exam scores also provide information to schools and the District to support improvement and planning around curriculum and instruction.

The Keystone Exams in Algebra, Biology, and Literature are state mandated. Students typically take the assessment(s) in spring as they near the completion of their Algebra 1, English 2, and/or Biology course(s). Each school is expected to have 95% of students take the Algebra, Biology, and Literature assessments. If schools fall below 95% participation, the state performance score for the school is negatively impacted. During the assessment period, it is very important for students to attend school daily and remain enrolled in their current school. For this reason, requests for administrative transfers will be postponed until the end of the assessment period, with very limited exceptions.

The documents linked below provide important information about the upcoming Keystone administration. Please review them carefully. You should also receive copies of these documents from your child’s school, and they can be found on our Keystone website.

  • Frequently Asked Questions: A fact sheet from the Pennsylvania Department of Education that provides answers to frequently asked questions
  • Electronic Devices Parent Letter: A letter to families detailing the Pennsylvania Department of Education policy on and consequences for using cell phones and other electronic devices during testing

If you have general questions about the District’s assessments, please contact the Office of Evaluation, Research and Accountability via our webform. If you have questions about the District’s graduation requirements, please contact the Office of College and Career Readiness by emailing or visiting their website.


Dr. Tonya Wolford

Chief – Evaluation, Research & Accountability