KSDE makes ACT free for juniors, some seniors

KSDE makes ACT free for juniors, some seniors

During the summer of 2018 the Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) decided to make the ACT free to all juniors and any seniors who haven’t taken the ACT already.

The ACT is a state test used for college admissions first introduced in Nov. 1959 by the University of Iowa’s professor, Franklin Lindquist.

It was the Kansas Legislature during the 2017-2018 session that appropriated money, roughly $2.8 million, to fund this initiative as part of the new school finance plan. Any junior attending public high school – or senior attending public high school who hasn’t had an opportunity to take the assessments – can take one free ACT assessment and one free WorkKeys suite of assessments,”  Ann Bush, communication specialist with the KSDE, said in an email.

Students have their own thought on why they think the ACT is free this year.

“To encourage juniors to take it and then maybe they’ll go to college,” Julianna Meinecke (11) said.

A lot of students like the idea of having the possibility of taking the ACT for free.

“I think it’s a good idea because it’ll encourage people to take it through the high school,” Mary Jolin (12) said.

Some students think studying helps achieve higher scores.

“I studied on the strategies of taking it,” Heidi Seiwert (12) said.

According to act.org 57% of the act composite test scores increased and 22% decreased.

“I probably wouldn’t study just because I don’t study for stuff for my regular school tests so why would you think I would take the time to study for the ACT,” Jolin said.

Seniors may have already taken the ACT in previous years.

“I took it with Augusta last year,” Seiwert said.

Those who have already taken it have advice to those who haven’t.

“Do the questions in the back of the section first. They assume you don’t have enough time so they put the easier ones in there,” Matthew Wright (12) said.

Not each piece of advice is the same.

“Make sure you have a lot of coffee that morning, because you’ll need it,” Seiwert said.

There is different days to take the tests.

“The initial test date for the free ACT, taken on paper, is Feb. 20, 2019. The initial test date for the WorkKeys taken on paper is Feb. 21, 2019. KSDE isn’t responsible for the administration of these assessments. It is the responsibility of each local school,” Bush said.