March Brings New Testing Requirements for Ohio High School Juniors

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ATHENS, Ohio – This spring, all Ohio juniors will take the ACT or SAT test. When House Bill 487 became effective in September, 2014, all high school juniors in Ohio were required to take a nationally standardized test to measure college and career readiness.

No cost to students

Juniors will take the ACT or SAT at no cost. The Ohio Department of Education said this is a way to help cut costs for students. This spring, approximately 117,000 Ohio juniors will take the ACT test and approximately 14,000 students will take the SAT.

The ACT/SAT tests are being used for more than just a college and career readiness test. Next year the tests will count as one of three graduation-requirement options replacing the OGT (Ohio Graduation Test). Along with the ACT/SAT tests, students will be required to take, pass and earn at least 18 points on 7 end-of-course examinations to graduate.

Athens High School March Calendar

Area schools choose ACT over SAT

Under the new requirements, each school will pick which of the tests to administer. Athens High School Principal David Hanning says that 200 juniors will be taking the ACT this spring.

“We chose the ACT because the majority of schools in Ohio take the ACT as a college entrance exam,” Hanning said. “It’s good that the state offers the opportunity for all students to take it at no cost to them.”

Unlike previous years, the ACT/SAT tests will be administered during the school day where all juniors will take the test at the same time.

Student typing on Chromebook

Testing Environment

Because more than 200 juniors will take the test simultaneously, Athens High School will place desks in the gym to accommodate the group.

“Everybody is hesitant; normally students get to pick where they take the exam so the gymnasium is a whole beast of itself,” Assistant Principal Jeanna Sycks said. “How we are going to maintain a quiet atmosphere and other things are the unknown.”

Athens High School juniors will take the ACT at the end of next month using Chromebooks. The ACT will offer a two-week testing window for online and accommodated testing running from March 21, to April 4, 2017.

“We chose to do it sooner rather than later because of all the other testing that we do online,” said Hanning.  “The ACT will be administered March 22.”

For more information on Ohio testing and dates visit The Ohio Department of Education