Lack of quiet spaces interferes with testing

by Chris Studor

May 17 school board meeting

While the Highland Local School District remains proud of the number of students who take Advanced Placement exams every year, the district says finding ample spaces at the high school to accommodate the number of students taking the tests remains problematic.

Highland High School Principal Carrie Knapp said that while some districts elect to send students outside of the school to test, Highland students typically take their exams at Highland High School as the state dictates the tests must be taken on specific dates and during normal school hours.

During the May 16 school board meeting, Highland parent Dan Hubert, said many students, taking AP tests, including his son, complained they were not provided quiet rooms to take the tests in this year. As an example, he said that during one of the tests, the AP students were placed on one side of the high school gymnasium while, on the other side of the curtain, students were participating in an open gym. During another AP test, Hubert said, students were placed in a room where the high school band was practicing next door.  

“Students spend their entire school year working hard at the AP courses, it’s a labor of love for many,” said Hubert. “These AP test are the most important tests which a student will ever take in terms of college testing and the scores can mean the difference between a student getting credit for a college level class and even the difference between getting into an elite college or not. There is no do-over with the AP test; this is a done deal now for these kids.”

Board members and administrators did not respond to Hubert’s comments during the board meeting. However, Knapp said the district may have to look to having students take AP tests offsite in the future. ∞