Poor conditions influence test results

Published 10:35 pm Thursday, March 21, 2013

To the editor:

I am writing in response to the article, “Schools pursue better AP performance,” published in the Feb. 26 edition of the Suffolk News-Herald.

As an Advanced Placement student, I do not agree with some of the statements presented in the article. It is frustrating to watch the school basically shut down for students to retake SOLs, yet when the timed AP examinations are being administered, the school day goes as normal. After paying about $90, nonrefundable, for an exam that I only get one chance to pass, one would think the school would make proper accommodations.

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During SOLs, there is an adjusted bell schedule, and teachers are advised to limit the number of students in the hallway. However, during AP testing, the school day continues as normal.

Bells still ring and classes continue on, which means that students, who are not aware that testing is going on, barge into AP exams causing further distraction for the test takers. In my personal experience, even an administrator walked into my test, loudly speaking into his radio, unaware of what was going on.

AP students do not even get to take their exam in a quiet classroom or the library. We are subjected to testing in the chorus room on tables that have been set up, especially for us. We were not able to take our AP tests on proper desks like the students who were retaking SOLs.

Before people accuse us for taking the test just for the “inflated GPA,” maybe they should think about what we have to face to take these college-level examinations.

How could anyone expect us to increase the passing rate when the schools are unwilling to accommodate us?

Chelsea Ellis