ACT pledges to rectify testing snafu

HAMPTON — ACT took full responsibility Monday for a testing debacle that left students without ACT exams to score.

ACT spokesman Ed Colby said 123 students showed up Saturday at Lovejoy High School in Hampton, where they were scheduled to take the ACT college entrance exam. But they were not able to take the test — their last opportunity until September — because the person responsible for proctoring the exam did not show.

“This situation is not typical,” said Colby, who has been with the testing agency 12 years.

Some students may have been looking to get scores in time to apply for college admissions this fall, he said. Saturday would have been their last official opportunity.

“It’s a very regrettable situation,” said Colby. “We’re working with the school system to re-arrange a makeup test for the students.”

Students were unable to take the test because the new testing supervisor responsible for coordinating Saturday’s test did not fulfill the obligation. She did not show up for the test itself.

“It’s very, very rare for this to happen,” said Colby, noting it was the only such case of 4,386 ACT testing centers open nationwide Saturday.

Colby said the supervisor, a former teacher at Lovejoy High, was newly-trained and hired by ACT. He said the previous test proctor was a long-time supervisor at the site.

ACT plans to hire a new testing supervisor for Lovejoy High in the coming weeks for future tests.

“We don’t want people to be discouraged by this situation,” he said.

He advises students wanting to do their best on the ACT to think “long-term preparation” and take challenging courses throughout their school careers.

“The ACT measures what you’ve learned through your years of school,” he said. “Taking rigorous courses is the best preparation for the test.”

Colby said students and parents who missed Saturday’s testing opportunity will be notified individually by email or phone. They also will be able to find a re-test date at www.actstudent.org.

“We will be in touch with each student individually,” he said. “We would certainly be happy to talk to the college and let them know of their circumstances.”

School officials did not immediately respond. Check back with the Clayton News Daily for updates.