The make-ups for the California High School Exit Examination (CAHSEE) took place in the school library on Tuesday, November 3 and Wednesday, November 4. Students in public schools must pass both the English Language Arts and mathematics portions of the exam in order to receive high school diplomas.
According to Assistant Principal Ralph Cave, a little over a hundred combined juniors and seniors took the CAHSEE make-ups. As there was no special schedule on the testing dates, regular classes were not affected by the exam. Students who needed to take the make-up tests were excused from their classes for testing.
According to Cave, students only had to take the tests which they had not already passed.
Students were only required to go on Tuesday if they needed to take portions of the English test and on Wednesday if they needed to take the math test. Only the students who had to take both tests were required to be present on both days.
Testing in general ended before lunch, but more time was allotted for the students who needed it to finish their exams.
According to the California Department of Education, the primary purpose of the CAHSEE is to ensure that students graduating from public high schools satisfy grade level competency in reading, writing and mathematics.
All students are required to take the CAHSEE for the first time as sophomores and must take the examination until both parts of the test are passed. Students who do not pass one or both parts of the CAHSEE in sophomore year may take the parts not passed to take the CAHSEE for the first time in tenth grade and must take the examination until both parts of the test are passed.
Students who do not pass one or both parts of the CAHSEE in tenth grade may take the parts not passed up to two times as a junior and up to five times as a senior.
The English section of the CAHSEE addresses state content standards through tenth grade. The mathematics portion of the CAHSEE addresses state standards from grades six and seven and Algebra I.
In order to pass the CAHSEE, a score of 350 out of a possible 450 points is required for each section.
Last year, 350 sophomores out of 415 passed the English-language arts portion of the CAHSEE, a pass rate of 84 percent. There was a 94 percent pass rate for the mathematics section, with 361 sophomores passing out of the 386 who were tested.
As for the make-ups last year, 29 out of 40 juniors passed the math section and 38 out of 80 juniors passed for English. 12 out of 22 seniors passed the math portion and 21 out of 64 seniors passed the English portion.
Some students felt nervous about taking the CAHSEE make-ups.
“The CAHSEE is nerve-wracking,” senior Stephanie Cardenas said. “Every time [I take] the CAHSEE I am so nervous … I tend to relax when I think about [what CAHSEE teacher Krista] Greksouk says.”