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Mansfield Lake Ridge High School's Eagle Media Website

Eagle Media

Mansfield Lake Ridge High School's Eagle Media Website

Eagle Media

Mansfield Lake Ridge High School's Eagle Media Website

Eagle Media

Test Stress

Image+courtesy+of+Google.
Image courtesy of Google.

Testing is an integral part of any school curriculum, but many students and teachers question if schools are going too far with the amount of testing they give. Students feel crushed under the weight of studying and testing days, and teachers are forced to juggle teaching their lessons and administering tests. On top of that, testing takes up a lot of time and priority over everything, disrupting plans for everyone in school while also stressing out students and staff.

Testing can have negative effects on a student’s mental and physical health. Staying up late to study is common, and the pressure to get good grades puts many students under mental stress. Freshman Lily Sexton finds that tests hold a lot of power over her mental state.

“I study for hours every night before a test. I oftentimes lose sleep and if I do badly on a test and my grade drops I get really worried about it, and my mental health tanks,” said Sexton. 

Students who have jobs or participate in extra-curricular activities may lack time to properly prepare for tests, causing stress. Freshman Abigail Milligan has trouble balancing after-school practice and studying,

“What’s awful is that it’s really hard to make time to study and getting our practices out of the way. We do have time after practice to study, but I feel so exhausted after and I feel like the workload just keeps getting heavier and heavier as the year goes on,” said Milligan.

Tests also affect teachers. Many staff members have to push back their planned lessons to make room for study and test days, and they also see the toll testing takes on students. Amy Markan, advanced English teacher, struggles to teach and test students at the same time.

“I have not been able to teach at all, and I think that’s been the common opinion for every tested subject teacher. It’s literally been test after test after test. The students are so beaten down. I feel like there’s been a big change and shift this year in my student’s attitudes,” said Markan. “There’s no learning, there’s no social or emotional bonding happening with the teacher and the student because it’s like ‘Test, here you go. Test, here you go.’ We’re seeing where the learning gap is, but we’re not able to address that gap and we’re not able to bond with our students.”

After so much non-stop testing, students become burnt out, which affects teachers’ motivation to teach. Markan finds that seeing her students become apathetic makes her feel the same way.

“I think testing is now negatively affecting us because you’re starting to become numb to the testing environment. It’s making us as teachers not care about it because I’m not getting to teach you guys. It’s like literally my whole entire year is testing, testing, testing,” said Markan.

With testing negatively affecting students and teachers so harshly, many people have proposed alternatives to replace tests. Sophomore Jake Morales believes that much more effective options can replace tests.

“I think there are better methods to gauging how ready people are and people’s progress that tests. I don’t think tests help that much and I think they do add on at least some stress that could be avoided. Projects or talking with teachers would be better than heavy amounts of testing,” said Morales.

Relentless testing damages students and staff members as they are forced to undergo stressful working conditions just to take or administer tests. Students suffer through physical and mental problems just to prepare for tests. Testing also forces teachers to push back or remove lessons from their curriculum and prevents them from being able to form social connections with their students. People have proposed more effective ways to track a student’s academic progress, yet testing remains the most popular method schools choose, despite all of its flaws.

About the Contributor
Apollo Anders
Apollo Anders, ENN Staff