Begin Main Content Area

​​​​​​​​Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA)​​​​​​​​

The annual Pennsylvania System School Assessment is a standards-based, criterion-referenced assessment which provides students, parents, educators and citizens with an understanding of student and school performance related to the attainment of proficiency of the academic standards. These standards in English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science and Technology identify what a student should know and be able to do at varying grade levels. School districts possess the freedom to design curriculum and instruction to ensure that students meet or exceed the standards' expectations.

Every Pennsylvania student in grades 3 through 8 is assessed in English Language Arts and Math. Every Pennsylvania student in grades 4 and 8 is assessed in science.

Individual student scores, provided only to their respective schools, can be used to assist teachers in identifying students who may be in need of additional educational opportunities, and school scores provide information to schools and districts for curriculum and instruction improvement discussions and planning.

In compliance with §4.51(a)(4) of the PA School Code the State Board of Education approved, "specific criteria for advanced, proficient, basic and below basic levels of performance."

To request to modify the PSSA testing schedule: If a school entity is currently in conflict with the 2023-2024 testing sch​edule for the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) due to religious observances or other dates of cultural significance, assistance is available. Schools with students seeking accommodations are permitted to delay the administration of the English Language Arts test until the make-up window, which concludes May 10, 2024. Those chief school administrators wishing to take advantage of this scheduling flexibility, or who would benefit from a consultation with the Department of Education on this topic, should email For more information on future schedules, please visit PSSA Testing Windows.​​


Expand AllClick here for a more accessible version

 Content Editor ‭[2]‬