High school seniors in Massachusetts will not be required to take the MCAS test this year in order to graduate, and students in grades three through eight will also not be taking the diagnostic assessment tests.

Gov. Charlie Baker on Friday signed a bill that will let Education Commissioner Jeff Riley waive the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System testing requirements for the 2019-20 school year.

The news comes as parents, teachers and students across the state work hard to establish new systems and engage in home-based distance learning. Baker in mid-March ordered all public and private schools closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Baker has not yet given up on the in-person school year. Under his latest order, classes are expected to resume in May. But even that is subject to change if the coronavirus surge lasts longer than expected. Governors in other states have cancelled classes for the rest of the year.

“At this point in time, we would be concerned about writing off the rest of the school year, especially considering how incredibly uneven the online process or the remote education process has been across the commonwealth," Baker said earlier this week

The state Legislature passed the MCAS bill on Thursday and it went straight to Baker’s desk.

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