Administration forces PSAT on juniors


Aubrey V. '19, Writer

Hopefully you’ve heard of the PSAT.  If you’re a senior, you’ve already wasted three hours of your life on the test and were able to laugh with others at the ridiculous questions it asked, then laugh even harder at the scores.  If you’re a freshman or sophomore you might be asking yourself, “PSAT who?”  Meanwhile, every upperclassman looks at your confused, innocent face and reminisces of the days when college seemed like a distant future.  For the juniors, well, you’ve heard about it, you’ve talked about it and you’re probably close to finding a loophole out of it (please share for the sake of others).

If by some miracle you’ve managed to avoid hearing any details about the PSAT, here’s the rundown.  The PSAT is an irrelevant test causing juniors around the country to wake up at some ungodly hour, sit in the same desk forever, question their existence and fill up a scantron with guesses of “C”.  All this so their scores can be ignored by most colleges, and they can possibly qualify for a National Merit Scholarship.  A scholarship, by the way, only 7,500 of the 1.6 million test takers will receive, according to NMSC.  Only one percent. Yay!  

On top of this, it is not optional.  On Wednesday Oct. 11, administration will drag juniors into the building against their will at 7:20 a.m. (someone please tell them about sleep deprivation) to take the PSAT while freshmen, sophomores and seniors lay untouched, sound asleep at home, on a three-hour delay schedule.

Once students finish guessing on all the questions because they have 1/20 of a second to read and answer each, their tests are collected, and they have a break.  Oh wait no they don’t.  Instead, they must complete their day on bell schedule eight which includes 15 minute periods, all filled with busy work.  It makes sense teachers should give mind-numbing work to make sure every junior goes home with barely enough energy to wipe away the tears stained on their face.

Flash forward about six weeks and the scores come out.  All the Oct. 11 test day stress boils down to a little set of numbers which define your future.  Except they don’t.  No, actually it only serves to prepare you for the SAT preparation most juniors don’t need because they won’t take the SAT.  As long as students submit an ACT score, most colleges in Ohio don’t require applicants take the SAT. The Ohio State University doesn’t require the SAT, Miami University doesn’t require the SAT, Bowling Green State University doesn’t require the SAT and Ohio University doesn’t require the SAT.  Not to say this test is useless, but juniors are required to take the actual ACT in the spring, so there’s no reason for students to take the SAT making it, well, useless.  

All in all, thank you Olentangy for providing a free preliminary test for an actual test juniors may never take.  Go Braves.