Staff editorial: AP testing causing end of the year struggles

Staff editorial: AP testing causing end of the year struggles

   Many AP students find themselves watching movies and playing games a majority of their school day in these last weeks of school. While mainly AP teachers allowed students free periods during AP testing in order to study, many find these pointless periods to linger on. 

   AP classes are all done learning curriculum and have already taken the tests, leaving teachers to plan close to three weeks of other activities to keep students busy. Being this close to summer, teachers are finding it hard to get students to do anything besides playing on their phones or simply just skipping class. 

   Most students are sitting in classes thinking to themselves, “I don’t really need to be here right now”, making it a long and boring day. But on the other hand, students are so mentally checked out that if another lesson is thrown at them they may combust.  

   Some suggest a simple project that does not require a ton of extra brain power, such as the AP Stats project that has students creating and testing a statistical hypothesis. Many find the project interesting while still incorporating what students had learned throughout the year. 

   Another suggestion, specifically for seniors, would be using the free time to help students apply for scholarships. It would be beneficial if counselors could come into senior AP classes and provide them with information that will help students figure out how to pay for college.

   For juniors, this would be the perfect time to introduce all of the steps it is going to take to apply to college. Juniors could start writing college essays, fill out their brag packet or simply just do research on what is next for them. 

   Given the extra time, students would also benefit from field trips that correlate to the AP course. Lots of students recall that the last school field trip they went on was in elementary school when they went to the zoo. Although this will take some planning and additional funds, students look forward to trips that get them out of the classroom. 

   What ultimately would help would be to have school end mid May when AP testing is over. That means that school would start earlier in August to allow for the correct amount of time at school. Some schools have their schedule like this to avoid the waiting game after AP testing. 

   While classes seem to linger on with no meaning, students can take advantage of this free time in the last weeks leading up to summer until teachers construct a more beneficial plan.