The College Board announced that it canceled the June 6 SAT in a statement sent to registered students and their families. This announcement comes after the cancellation of both the March and May tests, meaning no tests will be administered during spring 2020.
“We’ll ensure that students have opportunities to take the SAT to make up for this spring’s lost administrations,” the College Board said in its statement. “If it’s safe from a public health standpoint, we’ll provide weekend SAT administrations every month through the end of the calendar year, beginning in August. This includes a new administration in September, in addition to the previously scheduled tests.”
The new test is scheduled for Sept. 26. If schools remain closed in the fall, College Board announced it will host a digital SAT students can take at home, similar to the administration of its Advanced Placement tests this month.
The cancellations have caused unease for several students who say they spent a lot of time preparing to take tests on certain dates, including junior Eve DeGeronimo.
“The whole situation was quite stressful because I didn’t know when I was going to be able to take the SAT when I found out the date was canceled,” DeGeronimo said. “It was hard to not worry about not being able to take it before applying to colleges.”
Many universities have responded to lack of testing opportunities by dropping testing requirements on applications for 2021 freshman admissions. Among them are the nine campuses in the University of California system, as well as the 23 California State Universities.
The CSUs will be test blind, meaning there will be no place to submit test scores on their application. For the UCs, applicants will still have the option to include their scores.
In an official announcement detailing the temporary UC admission requirements, UC president Janet Napolitano said,“The COVID-19 outbreak is a disaster of historic proportions disrupting every aspect of our lives, including education for high school students, among others. The University’s flexibility at this crucial time will ensure prospective students aiming for UC get a full and fair shot — no matter their current challenges.”
Barbra Rosenstein, an independent educational consultant and founder of Clear Colleges Choices, praised the fairness of removing testing requirements.
“If tests can only be offered virtually in the summer/fall and students don’t have a quiet place at home to take a test then this puts them at an unfair disadvantage,” Rosenstein said. “Most importantly, this is such a stressful time for everyone. If a student can have one less thing on their plate to worry about that would be a gift.”
According to Sandra Cernobori of the College and Career Center, it is unclear exactly what kind of role test scores will play if a student decides to send them to a test optional school.
“I have needed to do research and ask a lot of questions, including writing to UC before they put out announcements,” Cernobori said. “The most important thing I have had to do is to reassure students that they are not the only ones in this situation. I understand that it can be anxiety producing, but there are lots of kids at Paly who haven’t tested as well as nationwide and internationally, so you’re not alone and colleges get that.”
Cernobori expressed concern over how admissions would work if only some students were able to take standardized tests.
“It’s not apples-to-apples,” Cernobori said. “If some Paly students have test scores and some don’t, it’s not a great situation.”
Many students remain eager to test, hoping to strengthen their applications, including junior Corinne Burns.
“Even though some colleges I am applying to may not require them, I’ve worked hard on the ACT and if I get score I am proud of, I would want to show that off,” Burns said.
DeGeronimo said she feels the same way.
“I still plan to take the SAT when I am able,” DeGeronimo said. “I think it might be important to have a score regardless of the requirements.”