The Navy has formulated a plan to move forward with spring petty officer advancement cycles that had been placed on hold in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The move affected active-duty and full-time support sailors in support cycle 106, as well as reservists in cycle 106, who want to advance to paygrades E-4 through E-6.
The plan now calls for cancelation of advancement exams for the roughly 20,000 E-3s who hope to advance to second-class petty officer. Advancements instead will take place using a modification of the current scoring formula, the Naval Personnel Command announced. Affected third-class petty officers will not have to take advancement examinations under typically crowded conditions. Rather, candidates will be ranked using a final multiple score that will not include an individual examination score. This would include the performance mark average, pass not advance points, service in paygrade and education.
“A sailor’s on-the-job performance, as rated by their commands, will be the greatest factor in determining who advances,” the personnel command stated.
Because only 5,000 of the pool of 70,000 sailors hoping to advance to second- and first-class petty officer still need to take examinations, the service believes this can be done in settings where appropriate social distancing can occur.