The Royal

The Student News Site of Hempfield Area High School

The Royal

The Royal

The Final Moments
The Final Moments
May 15, 2024
The Last Ride
The Last Ride
May 8, 2024

Take It or Leave It


 The day of the PSATs has been a long dreaded day by both sophomores and juniors, but this year, the student body has been given the choice to take them or leave them. What was once a mandatory 2 hour sentence, is now a choice. Will the PSATs help or are they unnecessary?  Each student has the option to choose. 

According to Mr. William Swan, 57% of Hempfield Area Senior High School graduates go onto a four year university. “With almost 40% of the student body not pursuing higher education, taking a standardized test geared towards the collegiate path is a waste of their time”. 

However, for college bound students, the PSATs are a great opportunity to prepare for the SATs. Though many post-secondary schools are now test optional, SAT scores can help boost an application and qualify students for thousands of scholarships. Removing the PSATs entirely or forcing everyone to take them negatively impacts half of students.  Luckily, Hempfield has incorporated a new policy regarding the PSATs. Students can now choose.

Both college bound students and students who plan to take a job immediately after graduation benefit,  and the students are more involved in their education.  Swan believes that the whole decision to give students the option takes stress off of staff and students. It also will not waste half of the day for those in the building who are not taking the test.  He elaborates on by saying how fewer teachers and classrooms will be used, since all testing will be taking place in the cafeteria, and that non test takers will still be able to attend their normal class schedule.

With PSATs and SATs going digital this year, a few small changes will occur. Swan expressed that as far as he can tell, the tests will be more efficient. Online tests will be about half an hour shorter, and fewer teacher instructors will be needed.  Furthermore, a paperless test will also prevent students from having to lug around calculators and #2 pencils. Though technology can potentially be unpredictable and problematic, school counselors have been working to circumvent possible problems that may arise.

Ultimately, an online test should make the lives of students and teachers easier, and allowing students the option to take them  gives the student body more say in their education. So take it or leave it; the choice is yours.  

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Tanner Collins
Tanner Collins, Contributor
Tanner Collins lives his life by the quote "Whether you believe you can or you cannot, you are right". Tanner does not wake up trying to find a story, but with an open mind, he waits for a story to find him.  Tanner is a devoted member of the Hempfield Area swimming and diving team, and whether he is at the pool or behind a laptop, he is hardworking, thorough, and a stickler for details.  Tanner feels the need to be thrown out of his comfort zone regardless of what others think.  He is not afraid to go up to strangers and introduce himself whether he likes their style, or he thinks they need a friend.  Tanner is blunt and honest but also genuine and sweet-hearted. These contrasting traits allow him to dig deep and inspires others to be their true selves.