A Note from the Superintendent’s Desk – High school parents need to be aware of changes to state assessment testing

Dr. Darcy Benway

Dr. Darcy Benway

Effective for the 2016-2017 school year, all high school juniors will be required to take the SAT plus writing exam as part of the state assessment system. The SAT will be the accountability instrument for Illinois secondary schools as a component of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

OTHS strives to prepare all students to reach their post-high school goals.  We recognize that college entrance exams are a gateway for college admissions and scholarship awards.  Exposure to, and practice of, standardized tests has been a proven strategy to raise student scores on these types of exams.  With this knowledge in hand, OTHS has designed an Assessment Plan to maximize the standardized college entrance exam experience for our students.

All junior students will be required to take the state administered SAT exam on April 5, 2017.  Because many Midwest colleges and universities still prefer the ACT exam for college admissions, we know that many OTHS juniors will also choose to take the ACT exam on their own during the 2016-2017 school year.  In prior years, OTHS has offered a series of college exam experiences during a student’s high school career to prepare them for the state administered ACT exam.  As we transition to the SAT exam, but still recognize the importance of the ACT exam, OTHS will continue its efforts in college exam preparation by implementing both SAT and ACT practice experiences for students.

The following assessments will be administered at OTHS during 2016-2017 to assist students to reach their post-high school goals:


We encourage students and parents to visit the ACT website at www.act.org or the College Board website at www.collegeboard.org for additional information regarding these exams. The OTHS Guidance Department will also be providing additional information to students and parents as we approach upcoming assessment dates.

OTHS will continue to refine and develop its curriculum and assessment offerings to support our students as they prepare for college entrance exams and the rigors of college coursework.

Have a question for the Superintendent?
Send your comments to BenwayD@oths.us