The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


Powering past the PSAT

Junior PSAT day becomes a full school attendance day for all grade levels
Graphic credit to Ramiyah Lee ’24

On Tuesday, Oct. 17, the junior class will take the PSAT, but unlike previous years, they will be required to finish out the school day alongside the rest of the school who have a full attendance day.

The decision was made because students are required to attend school for a specific amount of days in accordance with Illinois State Board of Education attendance guidelines. 

“We’re using a digital platform, and because of that there’s a lot of flexibility, so students don’t have to test on one day at one time,” said Nicole Guevara, Jones testing coordinator. “Because of all this flexibility, the district thinks that we don’t need to give the rest of the students the day off.”

While Guevara is usually able to follow a similar schedule for testing days that she has in previous years, this year’s PSAT required extensive planning and consulting. 

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“I worked with several people in the building on different schedules, trying to make it work for all students and there’s just not a good way. We went with the C day schedule that I modified a little bit just to make sure that juniors have enough testing time,” said Guevara.

The modified C day schedule consists of all seven class blocks for 35 minutes each with 10 minute passing periods. During the middle of the day, there will be a 2 hour and 15 minute block divided by grade level for AcLab, lunch, and Eagle Lab check-in. 

Juniors are required to attend classes that occur after this lunch block (5th-7th periods).

Some students not taking the PSAT have shared the opinion that the modified C day schedule is a waste of their time, and it would be more productive if attendance wasn’t required at all. 

“During the C days, teachers purposely do not plan things and the turnover time between classes makes it not useful to get [other] work done,” said Emmie Alexander ‘24.

However, Guevara sees this unique schedule as the perfect opportunity for students to complete required administrative tasks and get back on track with their school work.

“I think [the C day] can be useful,” said Guevara. “We’re doing the Cultivate Survey that day. I also think it’s a good time to catch up on things.”

In the past, one teacher has been assigned to each testing room as a proctor. However, with classes in session, teachers will not be able to devote themselves as a proctor for the entire duration of the exam.

“I had to get creative with proctors, so there’ll be one proctor for each room, and the teachers will be jumping in and out different helping as monitors based on their prep times,” said Guevara. 

Juniors taking the PSAT also share feelings of worry that this new schedule will impact their performance on the exam.

“I think I’m going to be stressed out [knowing I have to attend class after] and not be able to perform as well,” said Neil Manadan ‘25.

Jones uses data from the test to determine how teachers can best prepare their students for the SAT in the spring. 

“As a school we use the data to inform how we’re going to help our juniors,” said Guevara. 

Despite many administrative challenges and student concerns, Guevara is hopeful that teachers and administrators will be able to run the test successfully,

“It’s very difficult with all the students in [school], so it’s going to be different and possibly a little hectic, but we’re all gonna do the best we can,” said Guevara.

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Samantha Dombar ‘24
Samantha Dombar ‘24, Journalism I

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