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Bill proposes no more SBAC, free standardized tests

Taking college entrance exams like the SAT and ACT are key steps towards college admissions. There is now a new possibility to eliminate the SBAC (Smarter Balanced Assessment) and make the college entrance tests more accessible to students with the help of Assembly Bill 1951.

According to statistics measured by the Long Beach Unified School District, the SAT-taking rate rose up to 100 percent just by providing the opportunity to take the test for free during the school day.

“I think taking the SAT at school would be great because it’s easier than going off campus and doing it,” said sophomore Diego Argon. “I definitely think more people will take it if it’s offered at school.”

Currently, sophomores and juniors at CVHS are given the chance to take the PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT for free in preparation for the SAT.

But more opportunities for taking the SAT can be attainable by students with the passing of Assembly Bill 1951, which could possibly allow school boards to replace the current standardized test, also known as the SBAC, with either the SAT or ACT.

Additionally, school districts willing to make the switch from using funds for the SBAC to either one of the college entrance exams would be required to offer it to all students for free and to accommodate ESL students and students with disabilities.

“I like that there may be a chance to take it at school because people who can’t afford it can now easily take it and it’ll allow more opportunities for students,” explained junior Jasmin Lau.

Supporters say making better use of the resources and time for busy high schoolers is a great way to reach out to students and can even impact their future when it comes to applying to colleges.

“There’s pros and cons but it could be a natural progression from the PSAT and removes some barriers that may exist for students,” said counselor Allison Zuckerbrow.

The Assembly has not yet voted on the bill.