Juniors are required to take the ACT during school. The testing took place on April 5.
Every junior received an email on March 15, about signing up for the ACT during advisory that Thursday. The school had not given past information or notice about taking the ACT to the juniors. Two weeks after the first email is sent another one is sent giving information about what to do on test day.
Colleges use the test scores to determine if a student qualifies for any scholarships being offered. If a student wanted to take the test outside of school it would cost $60 without the writing and $85 with the writing. There are additional fees, $25 if the student chooses to change the test option, and $36 as a late fee. If students aren’t happy with the score, taking it again is an option, and they can only take it up to 12 times.
“The ACT contains four multiple-choice tests—English, mathematics, reading, and science—and an optional writing test. These tests are designed to measure skills that are most important for success in postsecondary education and that are acquired in secondary education,” This is the description from the official ACT website. The test takes about three hours to take, and with the optional writing section it will take four hours.
The administration doesn’t require preparation of the students during school or even tell the students where to go to get help in either of those emails. If the students want to prepare or receive help before the test, they would need to do so on their own. They could ask their counselor what to do to prepare or if they can take classes offered to help.
“It was actual h***. It made me feel dumb, like I’m not worthy, and I hate that it sets up your entire future because that just sent me into an existential depression,” junior Julia Burford said. She felt as though these types of tests are not necessary for colleges and that they shouldn’t force kids to do it.
Other students felt the same way and would rather take the test after preparing, so they don’t have to take it multiple times to get the score they want. These students want to get one really good score the first or second time taking the test so that they can submit them to colleges for review with scholarships.
This will be Dakota Motley’s first year on ECHO staff. They also made several contributions while taking journalism class their junior year.