The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Next Generation

April 1, 2010

Preparation plus incentives equal success for CHS students taking the Ohio Graduation Test

CONNEAUT — At Conneaut High School stress and fun come hand and hand. Sophomores took on the challenge of the Ohio Graduation Tests and can look forward to dancing the night away at the upcoming beach bash dance with the rest of CHS.

During the week of March 15 to 20, CHS sophomores took the Ohio Graduation Test that is required for graduation.

After the big test Kohl Kociemski said the tests were mostly easy. “Social studies was the hardest for me,” Kociemski said.

This week also meant a lot of stress for test takers who were expected to uphold the reputation at Conneaut High School. For the past five years Conneaut High School has been rated “excellent” on the state report card. One of the factors in determining the ranking is the passage rate on the OGT.

Kociemski did not feel the pressure, however. “My teachers prepared me well for the tests,” Kociemski said.

There are many incentives for sophomores who pass all five sections of the OGT the first time. These include daily attendance prizes such as soda and pizza drawings and a trip to Waldameer next school year for every student passing all five sections.

Guidance counselor Jeff Applebee said that CHS sophomores boasted a 99 percent attendance rate. “Parts of the success are the incentives, the importance of the test and fulfilling the tradition of excellence. This is something the kids really want to carry on,” Applebee said.

 Sophomore Jennifer Oxley felt that the incentives pushed her to do her best. “It’s nice to know that I will be able to graduate if I pass them all,” she said. “A trip to Waldameer is also very exciting.”

For non-test-takers OGT week meant the opportunity to sleep in. These students were not required to arrive at school until 9:45 a.m.

“I really enjoyed sleeping in all week,” said senior Chris Howland.

Now that spring break is quickly approaching students are looking for ways to relieve the test-taking stress. Students will kick off their spring break with a beach themed dance for all Conneaut High School students today from 8 to 11 p.m.

“It will feature a limbo contest, hula hoop contest and the famous disc jockey skills of business teacher Anthony Evans,” said senior class president Tevin Colbert.

This will be the last dance for underclassmen and a warm up for prom for the upperclassmen. The money will benefit the senior class and will go toward the cost of annual senior trip to Cedar Point.

“It’s hard when you only have so many fund-raisers; yet we want to be able to give the senior class the trip they deserve,” said senior class officer Sadie Duris.

The event will be held in Garcia Gymnasium, a rare treat for students. In the past, all school dances have been held in the cafeteria. The dance will feature throwback hits from the ’90s and early 2000s, which are sure to spark some memories among students. Cedar Point tickets will also be raffled off at the event for seniors. The senior class officers have been putting much work into the event.

“We have spent the last two weeks, giving up lunch periods, in order to plan for the event,” said Colbert.

“This dance might be one of the simplest, yet one of the most thought out,” said Duris.

To bring attention to the event, all of the officers also participated in making an advertisement video with the help of the media production class.

“There will surely be a lot of surprises for attending students,” Colbert said.

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