Seniors take ACT at school


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Ms. Amy Clark distributing test forms to students in the cafeteria.

Bring your pencils, calculators, and masks. It’s ACT day. But this one looks a little different for the Class of 2021. 

For the last four years, the school provides a free ACT (American College Testing) for the juniors in the spring. However, due to Covid restrictions and guidelines, the Class of 2021 did not get to take its test until now. 

First was determining if we were allowed to test due to CDC limitations on gatherings,” said chairperson of the OHS Guidance department Dr. Jennifer Gross. “We then had to figure out the logistics of maintaining social distance while students enter and during testing.  Then coordinating teachers, arranging rooms, etc. It was time consuming.”

Almost 300 seniors came to school to take the ACT on Oct. 6. In addition to wearing masks while testing, students had their temperature checked as they came in and were put into different groups to limit movement throughout the building. 

Seniors Payton Buschhorn and Cora Darmody checking in with Mr. Rodney Gerdes at the entrance to Gym A. (tiger paw)

“Wearing masks wasn’t too weird, but it definitely was different being in the school with all my friends but not being able to see or be near them all,” Sophie Kettenbrink (12) said. 

Usually, students test throughout the building in different classrooms. This time, students were placed in the gyms, cafeteria, and a few classrooms.  

“It was kind of weird but nice being so far apart,” said Kettenbrink. “It made it easier to focus on my own pace and not how I was doing in comparison to others.”

While many colleges are not requiring ACT scores for admission this year, providing the test is still important to OHS administration and students.

“ACT is also a way for us to measure how we are doing against other schools and getting students ready for college admission,” said Gross. “Since ACT is nationally standardized, it’s a nice way to compare our students to others.”

Despite some colleges removing the ACT score for admissions, some students still took the test seriously.

Emma Lutker said, “Many colleges are becoming test optional, so if I do well on my ACT and put that on my applications, I have a better chance of getting into schools and of getting a pretty decent scholarship.”

For many students this was their first time taking the test. 

“I had been prepared to take the ACT earlier in the spring,” Henri Groves said, “but since it was cancelled, I spent most of quarantine not thinking about it.”