Testing brings anxious times for students and teachers alike


Do high test scores come at a high cost? 

As students hit the books to ace their exams this year, they are often faced with sleepless nights, hours upon hours of studying, and the never ending feeling the 2023 test season has to bring. 

With the need for tutors on the rise, prices are skyrocketing, ranging from $45/hour all the way up to $100/hour, according to tutors.com. With the test season quickly approaching, the high demand for tutors is presenting families with a struggle in the midst of April through May. 

“In preparing for my upcoming AICE Exams, it [was] really convenient to work with my tutor when my teacher is unavailable and I am in need of a further explanation on a topic,” Olympic Heights sophomore Lily Ames shared.

As students began preparing for their upcoming exams, feelings of pressure and stress begin to appear in the process. In order to be successful in receiving a sufficient score, students practiced various test strategies to ensure they were well prepared both mentally and physically for their exams. 

Over time, years progress and the competition amongst students to receive higher scores on AICE and AP exams progresses as well. “I feel as though it is hard managing my potential to study while dealing with the constant need to ‘live up to an expectation,’” claims OH sophomore Brooke Smith.

This year, like many others, a multitude of students are utilizing study techniques to help them better prepare for their standardized exams. “To prepare for my exams, I have been studying nightly with the flashcards I have made for each of my AP and AICE classes,” OH sophomore Olivia Kottas added.

Featured each week on the Olympic Heights Lion’s Weekly Newsletter, OH English teacher Dr. Marianne Russo shared a variety of tips on the importance of health when preparing for exams. Such tips included, “Get outside,” “Keep moving,” “Take care of your hygiene,” and “Get enough sleep.” 

To keep students on track for success, OH teachers prepared months ahead of time to ensure students were ready when the testing season began. With a pass rate that varies between 70-80%, OH AICE Marine Biology teacher Ms. Heather Ortiz shared, “We review the Cambridge subject content in detail so that students know what learning outcomes they are expected to know. In addition to this, we look at old exam questions to prepare for Cambridge style questions.” 

Ms. Connie Ludy has stepped into the role of the recently vacated Cambridge Exams Officer for OH, overseeing all AICE testing.  Some students test “to meet graduation requirements, others to earn college credit, and still others to meet college entrance requirements,” according to Ludy. “We work with each student for their specific needs.”

“Outside of the classroom, motivation is the key to success,” Ortiz added.