New ACT Prep Class Available at BE


Haley Grether and Ahna Cates

Today’s preparation determines tomorrow’s achievement.

Starting in the 2018-19 school year, Bullitt East will now offer an ACT prep class for students.

This class will be for students of any grade level, covering math, english and reading. It will be focusing on preparing students to take the nearly four-hour test. The class is one semester in all, with nine weeks being focused on math, and nine weeks being focused on reading and english, which will be paired with another half-year elective of the student’s choice.

The ACT is a standardized test taken by high schoolers across the United States and Canada and stands for American College Testing. The function of the test is to measure a student’s ability to do college-level work by having timed questions in the sections of math, reading, english and science. Many students need a high ACT score to get accepted to their desired college or receive scholarships. Taking the ACT or SAT is required for application to most universities. Next year, AP English teachers Abigail Phillips and Leo Craven will be teaching the english/reading ACT preparation class. Kristy Tinelli and Paige Robinson will be teaching the Math class.

These classes are designed to prepare students for the ACT, providing them with lots of practice problems and tips in order for them to perform well on the test. “I think we’re being more intentional about identifying kids and helping them get over the benchmark line. Where as a lot of what we’ve been doing has been reactionary with having kids in college reading, and it’s good to get those kids caught up, but it’s great to help them hit benchmark earlier in their high school career. So, I think this really helps us focus in on that,” said English Department Chairman Larry Steinmetz.

Starting a brand new class can be challenging for teachers to figure out a starting point. There are summer training classes for teachers designed to provide them with more resources for new classes like the ACT prep class for next year. “I’m a little nervous. I feel like I was just getting my feet under me, with teaching AP Literature and English IV. I am going to the AP training this summer to get more resources. I am a little nervous about having to teach three different classes, but I think that it would be good for students,” said Phillips. The class was added suddenly and late in the year and some teachers felt unprepared to take on another class because of this.

Others seem to feel ready to teach this new class. “Yeah, I think I’m prepared because I’ve done a lot of ACT prep for after-school tutoring. So, I have a lot of resources, and currently there’s a lot more online resources than there was”, said Tinelli. The math semester is mainly focusing on testing strategies due to the strict time limits on the ACT, and the various types of problems that may be different than what’s seen in a typical high school math class.

Selecting the teachers for this new class seems to have been based off of work ethic and experience. However, when teaching a younger audience, it is sometimes good to be relatable to the students. Some find that younger teachers are easier to talk to because there is less of an age difference. “I think that they wanted a teacher who was younger because Mr.Craven and I are both teaching it. I think they wanted a teacher that was willing to grab it by the horns, I guess, and dedicate time to it, somebody that is willing to take it seriously,” said Phillips.

For any students who want to do well and improve their scores, this the class to sign up for. “If kids who want to improve their ACT score actually sign up for the class, then I think they can definitely figure out where they are and how much they want to improve. I think everybody is kind of at a different level,” said Tinelli. This new class is designed to push students to meet benchmarks earlier in their high school career before the state ACT test in March, junior year.

The ACT preparation classes will be available to take during the next school year, and schedule changes are possible due to the class being added last-minute.