Testing, 1, 2, 3

Varun Vishnubhotla, Sports Editor

Northwood, along with all Irvine Unified School District (IUSD) high schools, mandated student participation in the PSAT, Pre-ACT (PACT) and PSAT 8/9 during conference week, in an effort to increase student participation in these tests.

This move is intended to correct the problem of student after-school activities interfering with attending testing outside of school hours. The IUSD academic committee set a specific test administration day, Oct. 16, to ensure optimal participation.

“Around 8-10 % of Northwood students are on free or reduced lunches, so this move tends to their needs as they may not have the testing resources to prepare or the parental guidance to succeed,” Principal Leslie Roach said. “Last year, in March, teachers were frustrated with students going to class after taking the test, which is why the leadership team decided to put conference week and the senior trip in the same week for feasibility.”

While the idea of choosing a dedicated testing day has proved uncontroversial, the inclusion of the PACT for sophomores is puzzling because few California students take the ACT.

“Although there is a PSAT 10, the PACT provides students the opportunity to be exposed to a variety of tests,” Assistant Principal Kortney Tambara said.

A nationwide conversation about the purpose of test scores last year prompted the University of California schools to consider removing test scores from its application. But until more colleges drop the test score requirements, Northwood’s new testing protocol remains.

“It will be interesting to see the changes that will be implemented at the college level,” Tambara said.

For the academically ambitious Northwood population, freshmen and juniors can view their scores on the Collegeboard website on Dec. 10, while sophomores will get their scores in TA.