Surprise! A Day Off for Underclassmen


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Krista Blazier, Reporter

[Editor’s note: This story was amended to indicate that freshmen have only half the day off, not the full day.]

Next week, while juniors are busily bubbling in circles and seniors are stressing over their college applications, the freshmen and sophomores will be snoozing away at home, grateful for this surprise day off.

How did this happen? Didn’t testing day used to mean that everyone took an actual test?

Traditionally, testing day has been a day full of perks. Free dress and a short day, along with the fact that no classes actually met, made testing day seem not so bad after all. Besides the daunting tests or college applications that lay in front of them, students got a day away from grades and homework in the middle of the week.

Each class had a different, but equally as strenuous exam or activity to complete on testing day, meaning that every student was required to exert at least some amount of mental activity. Freshmen took the PLAN test, sophomores took the EXPLORE, juniors took the PSAT, and seniors took a workshop for college applications.

However, only half of these activities are being carried into this year’s testing day, meaning some girls have a day completely free of pencils, paper, and calculators.

“The ACT is no longer offering the EXPLORE or PLAN; that is why we are not using it this year,” says Vice Principal of Student Services, Susan Mikacich. “ACT has a new test called Aspire but it is not available for use on a tablet until Spring 2015. Hence, no testing for freshmen or sophomores this year.”

Luckily for freshmen and sophomores, this means that our school has no other option than to let the underclassmen have a day free of testing. So, 9th and 10th graders, if you are not in the mood to do much mental activity on Wednesday, October 15, then feel free to sit back and watch Netflix all day–or at least half the day for frosh, who will come to school at 1 for their mandatory freshman retreat.

But, freshmen, don’t get too excited for another half day off next year. “Presentation may decide to administer the ACT Aspire in the future,” says Mikacich. Starting in spring, the test will be available on tablets, and since all Pres students now have iPads, it is possible for sophomores to take this test next year. This year’s sophomores simply seem to be very lucky. So, do not take this test-free day for granted!

Underclassmen, have fun on your day free of reading passages for theme or trying to solve for “x”, and keep the poor upperclassmen in your thoughts.