STAR test dates earlier this year

February 15, 2012 — by Will Edman

Students might be surprised to find the STAR tests much earlier in the school’s schedule this year. The tests, which have previously been administered during the final week of AP testing, will now be taken on April 25 and 26. Seniors do not attend school on STAR testing days.

According to assistant principal Brian Safine, the move was required as a result of school’s earlier end this year. State law requires that the tests be given within the first 80 percent of school days. The original dates, between May 9 and 11, exceeded this deadline, and despite an appeal by the school, the state held that the dates should be moved earlier.

“The state didn’t understand our logic,” Safine said. “They wouldn’t budge.”

Because of the change, seniors will be given two days off school much earlier than in previous years. Students affected by this change also include juniors taking AP tests, who will have to take STAR tests during the pressure-filled studying phase of AP test preparation. However, the consensus seemed unaffected, due to the low stress environment of STAR testing.

“I don’t really care [about the change],” junior Alex Wang said. “The STAR tests are stress-relieving for me, so I don’t mind having them before AP tests.”

Teachers echoed students in their willingness to cope with the change.

“There’s nothing we can do about it because it’s state law,” physics teacher Kirk Davis said. However, Davis, questioned the validity of the STAR test, especially in its proximity to AP testing. “I think students get tested too much anyway.”