No Pre-ACT Opportunity for Juniors


Media by Annie Alcorn

ACT prep books consist of five full-length tests and an answer bank with detailed explanations to help students study for the ACT.

Andrew Vendt, sophomore, walked into school on Monday, Sept. 27 and headed to the theater where he stayed for the next four hours. Vendt was going to take the pre-ACT test.

Every year, MHS sophomores are given the opportunity to take the pre-ACT in the fall. This allows the sophomores to prepare for the real test by getting a baseline understanding of the timing, question types and strategies of the ACT.   

Vendt was one of those students.

“Now, I know what categories I really need to work on,” Vendt said. “I feel that taking the pre-ACT was very beneficial for me.”

Vendt struggled with the science portion of the test, but he felt he did really well in the English section, he said. 

“During the science portion, there were many questions that I was very unsure about,” Vendt said. “It made me realize that was where I needed to focus and improve for the next time.”

Now that he has knowledge of what to expect on the test, Vendt said he will start taking ACT prep classes and spend time focusing on studying for the test. 

However, the current juniors do not have the same advantage as Vendt and other sophomores. They were not able to take the pre-ACT because students were virtual the first quarter of the 2020-2021 school year due to COVID-19.

Alex Bray, junior, said he is already feeling the consequences of this lack of experience.

“I have no idea what to expect,” Bray said. “I do not feel ready at all, and I don’t know what to study or even how to study.”

Bray said he is worried about the math and science sections because he does not feel strong in those subjects. He said it would be easier to practice for the ACT if he knew what to focus on. 

Bray is not the only student feeling unprepared. Ava Quallen, junior, said she is frustrated she was not required to take the pre-ACT at some point during her sophomore year. 

“I feel like if you take the pre-ACT you know where you’re at and when to start studying,” Quallen said. 

Quallen is taking her first ACT test Saturday, Oct. 23, and said she is overwhelmed because the ACT is not like any other test she has taken at school. 

“Junior year is the most important in regards to thinking about college and what we want to do after high school,” Quallen said. “I think so many of us are just going into the ACT blindly.”

According to the ACT website, taking the ACT is extremely valuable to students as they start to plan their life after high school. The ACT is not only a college admission test, but it helps with college course placement, career planning, and ways to become visible to colleges. 

Principal Dr. Steve Hankins said he wants all students, especially the current juniors, to be aware and take advantage of the ACT prep courses, practice tests and study materials MHS offers.

“Also, as far as math, science, language arts and social studies classes, all of them have ACT type questions in the normal day-to-day work they do,” Dr. Hankins said. 

The only advantage the sophomores have from taking the pre-ACT is knowing how to time themselves, Dr. Hankins said. 

“The time crunch is probably the hardest part to navigate,” Dr. Hankins said. “So, on that side of it, the sophomores do have some extra practice in the timing of the test.”