The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

SOL and IB testing begins

Bayley Brill
Junior Amelie Trieu looks at her IB exam schedule for the month of May

May marks the countdown to the end of the year for most students, but  for others, May begins two months of non-stop testing that comes with IB classes and SOL courses.

For SOL classes, from the moment students walk in on the first day of school, to the night before the big test, teachers are cramming to teach students everything they need to learn. Teachers help students prepare for their SOL in multiple ways.

Some teachers give their students released SOL tests to understand what kind of questions will be asked. Other teachers, especially math and chemistry, use Jefferson Labs, or JLabs, which are online tests containing multiple released SOLs, and can be taken as a whole test, or broken up by “strands”, or groups, including the year of the test.

“My teachers have us take JLabs and get a certain score before we’re allowed to send them in for credit,” sophomore Gabby Payne said.

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For some students, practicing for their SOL counts more than the actual test. Teachers usually count JLabs as either homework or quiz grades to encourage kids to practice.

While some IB students have only had one year to learn their material, some students have had two years to learn what they need for their test, which means they have a lot of material to review.

“We spent all of second semester studying for our IB Math exam. We started out by doing packets that centralized on certain topics, and now we’re doing old IB exams as review,” senior Brain Khong said.

Many juniors and seniors are also beginning to ask for their IB exam study days, which are up to two excused absences. If a student is an IB diploma candidate, or taking four or more IB classes, they are allowed two days, and everyone else taking IB classes are allowed one, unless they ask for special permission. They are required to turn these in a week before the dates they choose to use as a study day. The idea is that you have a full day to study at home in peace before their exam. They use these study days, along with class time some teachers give to help study for their exam.

Along with the multiple tests that many juniors and seniors are taking, some students are finding they have conflicts with their SOL and IB tests.

“My IB Anthropology and USVA tests conflict. It’s annoying because all my work for my USVA SOL is still due the day the rest of my class takes their SOL, but I have to wait for the make up day to take my test,” junior Allie Vogus said.

In past years, students have only had one IB test a day, but this year, students have up to two tests on the same day.

“IB doesn’t allow us to reschedule test dates, so we’re just taking one right after another,” senior Ben Vest said.

Testing at AHS began on May 2 and will continue until the second-to-last day of school, June 17.

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About the Contributor
Bayley Brill, News Editor
This is Bayley's second year on staff. Last year she was a staff writer, and she is currently the News editor. Bayley also participates on the Varsity Field Hockey team, is the president of the National Art Honor society, and works at American Eagle in her free time. She hopes to continue playing field hockey on a club team in college as well.

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SOL and IB testing begins