Skyline under investigation for AP Testing Anomalies
Jason Liu and David Ramirez
June 11, 2011
Filed under News
The Education Testing Service (ETS) is currently investigating Skyline for breaches in procedure during this year’s AP Testing. There is no word yet on the outcome of this investigation, but there is no reason to believe that students’ scores will be affected.
According to Skyline’s AP Coordinator, Ms. Arkin, there were complaints filed to College Board, the company that oversees the AP program internationally, saying that testing conditions were compromised.
“There was a phone call and an email saying some seating arrangements didn’t follow protocol,” said Ms. Arkin.
A representative from the ETS visited Skyline on June 2nd to interview nine students about the testing conditions they experienced during their AP Exams. He chose interviewees randomly from a list of students who took multiple AP tests to determine typical testing conditions throughout the two-week administration of the exams. He also interviewed the adult proctors, many of whom were Skyline counselors.
Among those students interviewed was senior Michelle Louie.
“I told him the [AP Environmental Science Exam] was in the library and that it was kind of distracting,” said Louie.
“Last year, [the testing condition] was better because we had a lot of room,” she added.
According to Ms. Arkin, who sat in during the student interviews, there were some inconsistent answers.
“It was not clear what really happened during the tests. For example, some students answered yes to a particular question, and others answered no to the same question,” said Ms. Arkin.
The ETS representative did say that testing conditions were much worse at other schools, and that student scores will not be affected.
“The worst-case scenario is that one or two tests may have to be retaken,” said Ms. Arkin.
In a faculty meeting it was announced that the main concern was the AP Environmental Science test, because the seats were too close.
‘It is highly unlikely that my students will have to retake their test, but if they do, I will hold a review session shortly before the retake,” said AP Environmental Science teacher, Ms. Ostrom.
“Of course it will be voluntary, I don’t know how many seniors will want to return and take the test again,” she added.
Among those not returning to retake the test is senior Jackie Low.
“I feel like it’s not our fault, and considering how I’m probably not going to get credit for this test, I don’t feel like it’s worth the effort,” she said.
The number of credits each student receives from attaining a particular score on each AP exam, if any, varies for each college and university.
Mr. Jollymore, who teaches AP English Language and AP English Literature, believes that Skyline is not the place to accommodate testing such a large body of students.
“There are too many distractions on campus, but if this school really cares about testing, then we should invest the money to build a proper testing facility,” he said. “I also think that this is, above all, a learning experience, something that we can use to improve future testing experiences,” he added.
Ms. Arkin vows that this will not be an issue next year.
“Next year our administration will work more closely with the administration at Merritt College to provide the best possible testing facilities to students,” she said.
She is also confident that this situation will be resolved.
“Our kids are awesome, and they deserve their scores,” she added.