ACT exams set to replace AzMERIT, AIMS testing


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With the end of the year right around the corner, students can prepare for testing season. Day after day, students cram in last minute studies before the finals that determine their future in academics. However, testing is about to change and it affects all students enrolled in the Chandler Unified School District.

The district is on a mission “To eliminate seven testing days over the course of a child’s high school career and focus that time on learning in the classroom,” according to the district website. AzMERIT and AIMS science will be eliminated from the curriculum and ACT preparations and testing will be the main focus.

Most students would be aware that the yearly AzMERIT testing, “Was a bit controversial because as compared to AIMS, you did not need it to graduate,” according to Principal Dan Serrano, which caused students to not take them seriously.

The ACT test is free for the CUSD and granted to every individual when comes their junior year. If students wanted to take the test again however, it would be forty dollars as well as not included in everyday class time.
Now for Perry, this is viewed as a positive impact to the curriculum in which will benefit the future of all students who chose to further their education beyond high school.

“I think with the ACT, at least, students have more buy in because it can actually mean something for their future with college scholarships and college admissions, where AzMERIT, I don’t necessarily think had as much of a buy in with the students,” quotes Mara Schultz, head of the eleventh grade English department.

In the years prior to the present, tests would be distributed and required for students to participate in. Now all tests that are not sent off to colleges will not be required.

Thomas Rothery, department chair of the math department states, “I think students and teachers will find a little more practicality in the exam, has a little bit more meaning, and they can apply that to their college applications, to help improve and have a better score that will allow them into good schools.”

Now all tests that are not sent off to colleges will not be required and faculty believes students will highly benefit.

The school year of 2018 to 2019 is the first year AzMERIT and AIMS science testing have been eliminated from the curriculum plan in the CUSD. Those two tests calculated the basic understanding students had for the material that they have learned throughout the year.

According to Mr.Serrano, “We can compare our students, our juniors to juniors in the district and state and across the nation.”

The test scores recorded are compared throughout the district and nation to calculate the level of education students are receiving. The ACT test is a free, positive opportunity for students to take in order to better prepare them for their future, and for our school, “We are the highest in the district [discluding ACP],” Mr.Serrano said, and all students have benefited greatly.

Not only is eliminating the other tests beneficial for the students but it is “Long overdue… [and] seemed to be very redundant,” for students according to Mr.Green. Teachers, students, and parents all have had the concerns for the reason why so many tests would be distributed throughout the course of the year.

Mr.Green also claims that “One of the arguments that you always have is and that complaints is that we are testing for testing sake… what was the point behind it?”

So in order to solve this dilemma, administrators are hopeful the elimination of the two big tests will satisfy all members of CUSD. The ACT testing and the preparation for the test will take place of the standard academic plan.
The curriculum plan for preparation of the test in the eleventh grade classrooms will not be changing a whole lot, but “You’ll see us doing [more] things to prepare for it,” Mr.Serrano explains.

The district has always prepped the students for the ACT testing process, and in order to set them up for their future, a stronger focus will be dedicated strictly to the ACT test instead of other meaningless testing.


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