THE SKIER SCRIBBLER

Why Annual State Testing Matters

State+testing+performance+of+AHS%2C+given+in+2017.
State testing performance of AHS, given in 2017.

State testing performance of AHS, given in 2017.

Photo Courtesy of U.S. News

Photo Courtesy of U.S. News

State testing performance of AHS, given in 2017.

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Every year when annual state testing comes around, a look of disgust sweeps across AHS students. The seemingly endless amount of questions, stress, and confusion about the overarching purpose leave many students with a feeling of contempt for the tests, causing many to opt out. Many don’t know about the positive aspects, which include a better curriculum and teachers being held accountable.

AHS Principal, Tharyn Mulberry, feels that state testing brings lots of valuable information to the table, that helps not only the school but also the students.

“One of the major benefits of state testing is that when we get the testing results back, we can identify any areas that we can improve on as a school. So while these tests don’t particularly help an individual student, they do help with the school’s overall program,” Mulberry said. “For example, if we were doing an SAT and the results said that our students didn’t do so well in topics 1, 2, and, 3, then as a school we would restructure our programs. This, in turn, would help us create a better learning program for current and future students.”

Even though many students tend to avoid the state testing, they will eventually find that they may just be hurting themselves and their peers. AHS counselor, Josh Berro knows firsthand that state tests are used to give each school a rating, based on scores and participation.

“Depending on the participation and performance of our students on these state tests, our school is given a certain accreditation status. Then, our rating in the eyes of the state, and websites, and newspapers is something that colleges look at,” Berro said. “So the better we do on our tests, participation, and performance of our students, colleges will look favorably upon the school. Generally, these test will make the profile of the school look better for comparisons.”

AHS sophomore, Climary Sanchez, believes that the state tests are also important because they help students to self-evaluate.

“Like a lot of other students, I also don’t like testing aspect and the ridiculous process behind it. However, even though I dislike the testing itself, the results are worthwhile. I think that is important that we help to make our school look better in the eyes of colleges as well as to help the school recognize certain areas that need more attention,” Sanchez said. “But, personally, I think that the main benefit of the testing is that it gives students to the ability to see where they are academically and then helps them to make college choices from there.”

AHS freshman, Wesley Ferrell feels that because college and future potential is on the line, that the state tests do matter and are not to be taken lightly.

“Throughout my life, I have been told to take these tests without being told the reason behind it. Now having asked these questions and looked further into these reasons, I do agree that they are important. I think that not only participating but actually trying on these tests will end up helping students in the future,” Ferrell said. “Because of the school using this data, as well as colleges it is definitely worth it to try. I for one will keep working hard on these tests because I know now that they will pay off in the future.”

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