It was STAR testing week at DHS, and starting on April 16, juniors and sophomores alike were subjected to a medley of standardized tests and surveys, used as a means by the state of California to observe how far along DHS and other public schools like it are academically.
Along with the STAR test, there is a “Healthy Kids” survey, a series of questions asked to high school students to ensure that they are healthy mentally and physically, and used by the state to gage the overall student health of public schools.
On Monday April 16, a two-hour block was set aside by the school district and DHS administration for students to fill out the Healthy Kids survey.
The surveys were never delivered to the classrooms, and as a consequence of that, many DHS students sat around for two full testing hours and did nothing.
“It was a huge waste of time,” junior Manny Guerrero said, “we literally did nothing all day and then went onto the next testing period.”
Guerrero’s testing-room teacher is not one of his everyday teachers, and he attributes much of the inactivity on Monday to that fact.
Students who had teachers of their own were not as fortunate as Guerrero.
Widgen Neagley’s American Literature students happened to be together in the same testing room, so they used that two-hour block to discuss a book they are currently reading as part of their curriculum.
“I got lucky there,” Guerrero said, “I could have been stuck talking about a book like most of my friends. Instead I just got to hang out.”
DHS administration has not yet addressed the issue, and STAR testing week continues up through April 20.
In the meantime, seniors were preoccupied doing senior activities, to discourage them from ditching the whole week since they are not required to take part in STAR testing.