GHS students say test is tough

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 19, 2000

News Editor

March 18, 2000 10 PM

Sophomores and juniors at Goshen High School will get back to their normal curriculum this week after a grueling four to five days of graduation examinations.

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With the tests behind them, a few Goshen students, a little weary from testing, said the tests were hard, but some parts were definitely harder than others.

Stephanie Jordan, a sophomore, was taking the test for the first time, and said the test was easier than she thought it would be, but it was by no means easy.

"Everyone said it would be hard," Jordan said. "It was easier than I though it would be, and there was a lot of stuff on there that I had seen before."

Jordan said the science portion of the test was the hardest.

Averick Rogers, a sophomore, was also taking the exam for the first time, and said he expected it to be a little easier than it was.

"I knew it was going to be hard," he said. "But I thought it would be a little easier."

Rogers said the language part of the test was the most difficult for him.

Jamar Tucker is a junior at GHS and took the test for the second time last week. He said the second test was harder than the first one he took, but really only found one part difficult.

"Just the math part was hard to me," Tucker said. "It was definitely harder than I expected."

This year marks the first year in the change of the level of difficulty of the test. Instead of the exit exam, which was based on an eighth grader level, this year’s Graduation Exam is based on an 11th grade level.

Sophomores and juniors across Pike County in city and county public schools were administered the tests. Eleventh graders are required to pass the reading and language part of the exam, while 10th graders must pass the reading and language portion and the science and math parts.

Rogers and Tucker said they didn’t understand why the tests were changed, but think the test should have been left the way they were.

"Over the years there haven’t been any problems with the tests and it doesn’t make since for them to change it," Rogers said.

Although the tests were more difficult this year, Jordan, Rogers and Tucker said, it would probably been easier if they felt they were prepared for it. Even though some review was done before testing time, the students said it still was not enough. Jordan places some of the blame on block scheduling.

"I don’t think I was prepared," Jordan said. "I had forgotten everything I learned during the first semester. It would have been nice if we could have gone back to those classes and review the material we learned at the first of the school year."

Rogers said a lot of what he saw on the test he had never seen before although he did participate in a review session.

"The stuff the teachers taught us really wasn’t on the test," Rogers said. "We did a review in our biology class, but it was a while ago and most of it I had forgotten."

Tucker seconded Rogers comments about seeing items on the test for the first time, but didn’t have a solution for what could be done to make him better prepared.

"All I know is that the teachers could have taught us trig," he said.

Jordan, who still has two more years of high school left, said the test didn’t make her nervous because she knew she still had three or four more times to take it. She said what surprised her was how difficult the test was compared to other tests she has taken.

"I have already taken the ACT and the SAT and the graduation exam was harder than both of them," she said. "It was a lot more specific.

Jordan scored an 25 on the ACT.