Act Prep to Academic Sucess

Millard lays out new plan for preparing students for the ACT

Tyler Collins, Opinions Editor

Beginning the week of March 27, the week after spring break, students will have Mustang Time between 5th and 6th hour for ACT prep. These periods will take place for three weeks from 12:10 pm to 1:34 pm. On these days, lunch will not be during 5th hour. Instead, it will be during the Mustang Time period. Monday’s schedule will remain as it normally has been with a 24-minute Mustang Time.

Each grade will be doing slightly different activities during this time, with the exception of seniors who will have open campus. Juniors and sophomores will be participating in John Baylor Test Prep sessions, while freshman will be doing Naviance Test Prep.

“The district piloted the John Baylor Prep program at Millard South last year and the results were dramatic,” assistant principal Aaron Bearinger said. “Dr. Sutfin was able to secure a grant to pay for John Baylor at all the high schools this year.”

This new approach has several pros and cons aknowledged by the administration. The addition of this period will take away seven to eight minutes of instructional time in class each period for the three weeks. It also must be noted that Mustang Time teachers will not be qualified experts for each subject area that will be covered in the ACT prep.

There are many pros, however. Taking care of the prep in only one class period will make distribution of materials much easier for the administration. The Mustang Time advisors will also be able to aid some students more as they will understand the specific student’s strengths and weaknesses. Having lunch take place during Mustang Time also allows the class periods to remain more consistent, making lesson planning easier for teachers. Along with these positives, these prep classes will help to establish and foster a strong ACT culture at MN starting in the ninth grade.

In addition to these prepatory Mustang Times, the state of Nebraska has decided to use the ACT Writing section as the state writing assessment rather than the NESA which has been previously taken.
“I think this change happened because of several issues with the online state writing assessment in the past few years,” Bearinger said.

This change will save instructional time in school as students will not have to spend special testing days at school taking the NESA rather than being in class. Overall, Millard is hoping that helping students prepare for the ACT in such a way will aid them in their long term academic success.