University of California Suspends SAT, Minimum Grade Requirements in Coronavirus Era

People walk in front of Sather Gate on the University of California at Berkeley campus in Berkeley, Calif., Thursday, July 18, 2019. Soon students in Berkeley, California will have to pledge to "collegiate Greek system residences" instead of sororities or fraternities and city workers will have to refer to manholes …
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Janet Napolitano — who went from running the Department of Homeland Security for President Barack Obama to presiding as president of the University of California system — is suspending the SAT and minimum grade requirements for prospective students during the coronavirus outbreak.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported on the decision:

School officials said the temporary suspensions, which may be extended to future years “as applicable,” were prompted by cancellations of standardized and college entrance exams and numerous high schools adopting “pass/fail” or “credit/no credit” grading instead of letter grades for the courses needed to qualify for admission.

Standardized exam requirements were suspended for students applying for the fall 2021 semester while the letter grade requirements were suspended for classes completed in 2020. Officials said they won’t rescind any offers due to students or schools missing official final transcript deadlines.

“By removing artificial barriers and decreasing stressors — including suspending the use of the SAT — for this unprecedented moment in time, we hope there will be less worry for our future students,” John A. Pérez, chairman of the Board of Regents, said in the Chronicle report.

Napolitano called the coronavirus pandemic a “disaster of historic proportions.”

“The University’s flexibility at this crucial time will ensure prospective students aiming for U.C. get a full and fair shot — no matter their current challenges,” Napolitano said in a statement.

Schools around the country, from elementary to college, have been shut down — many for the remainder of the school year — in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

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