New TN Bill Could Allow Free ACT Retake for Students

CENTRAL STUDENTS PREPARE FOR ACT TESTING -- The ACT test is a requirement for college acceptance.

Preston Fore

CENTRAL STUDENTS PREPARE FOR ACT TESTING -- The ACT test is a requirement for college acceptance.

Preston Fore, Staff Writer

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Students all across the state of Tennessee, including those at Central High School, will more than likely take the ACT several times leading up to graduation. ACT scores are essential for college acceptance and to record academic success. Most Central High Juniors will take the ACT once free of expenses, but many will not score ideal levels. Therefore, students have to pay about $50 to retake the test.

“Central will give approximately 210 juniors the free ACT test at school on April 19th.  Of those, probably 125-150 students will end up retaking the test for a better score,” stated senior guidance counselor and ACT specialist Lindsey Ruggles.

Tennessee State House Bill 1537 would give students the opportunity to retake the assessment one additional time at no cost. The bill also eliminates the tenth grade PLAN test that has been traditionally required. This bill has not been passed yet, but it might be active starting next year.

“The free additionally retake sounds like a great idea. It would give students a cushion to not feel as pressured on the first time they take the ACT,” expressed sophomore John Britt.

The purpose of the new state act is to increase college readiness and meet the state’s goal of an ACT testing average to be 21 by 2020.

“The state goal of 21 is a great goal since it is a threshold for many scholarships. Central averages around a score of 17.8, but we hope to increase our average by at least 1 point by each year,” shared Ruggles.

State Bill 1537 would also potentially allow students and teachers to access state assessment and end of course exam questions along with the students’ responses.

Central wishes students the best of luck on ACT testing and hopes they will take advantage of the potential forthcoming free retake.

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