Written by Sanskriti Bimal Thursday, 27 March 2014 00:00
Everyone, from educators, admission officers and parents to the edgy, nervous, tense, somewhat exasperated and much affected students, have an opinion on it.
“I am so glad that the essay portion is being taken away,” said Mineola High School freshman Emily Wood. “I was going insane trying to figure out how to write a excellent essay in just 25 minutes. It’s a big relief.”
Only time will tell whether the new SAT changes to be introduced in two years are good or bad and whether they will serve the test's purpose—to better assess students preparedness for college. The 88-year-old test will return to its original grading scale of 1600. The exam moved to a 2400 scale in 2005.
A chat with Whittney Smith, assistant principal of guidance at Mineola High School, reveals more.
“It will have three sections: Evidence-based reading and writing, math, and the essay,” said Smith. “The essay is optional and will provide a separate score. It will drop some of the obscure vocabulary it has traditionally used. The math section also will narrow its
focus, and reading comprehension questions will weave in information from other subjects, such as science, history and social studies.”
Smith said the new SAT would not deduct points for incorrect answers (currently a wrong choice loses one quarter point). The math exam will focus on three essential areas: problem solving and data analysis; linear equations and systems; complex equations and manipulation. Calculators will be permitted on certain portions of the math section only.
In the current SAT, Smith said, scoring points are deducted for incorrect answers and math section encompasses content from a wider range of high school-level syllabi. Also, calculators are permitted for the math section.
“The new redesigned SAT would require evidence based reading and writing, vocabulary focused on words that are widely used in college and career,” Smith said. Students would be required to analyze both text and data in real world contexts and the exam would include an excerpt from one of the founding documents or a text from the ongoing great global conversation, the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights and the Constitution will be included.
This year’s freshman will be the first class to take the new SAT in spring of 2016, according to Smith. The high school graduating classes of 2014 and 2015 will still take the current SAT.
“Students should continue to work hard in school, read, write, and improve vocabulary,” said Smith. “In the summer before your junior year, there are many test preparation options that parents and students can explore. We offer classes at school as well as an online program to assist students in preparation.”
There is much debate and commentary on the SAT and what it measures is still the question, however there is no denying the fact that the SAT is among the most rigorously researched exams in the world and everyone who takes it is being measured against the same yardstick.
Friday, 29 August 2014 00:00
In a typical Long Island community packed with houses and backyards, there are a couple of acres of open land of community gardens where people are growing basil and dahlias and roses and cabbages—people like Terry Dunckey of Westbury and Peg Woerner of Great Neck, tending their small plots and helping to promote sustainable and organic practices.
East Meadow Farm, off Merrick Avenue, is owned by Nassau County and operated by Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Nassau County. Previously it was a family-owned farm that was purchased by the county through the Environment Bond Act Program, a $150 million program that called for, among several mandates, the preservation of 400 acres of open space. In 2009, CCE of Nassau was awarded the lease to the land and in January 2012 took possession of the property. East Meadow Farm is a place where we can get the best advice on how to make our gardens grow without harming the earth. Part of the CCE’s original proposal was the establishment of a farmer’s market and, now, the market is open two days a week, a place to purchase organic vegetables and flowers during the growing season.
Friday, 29 August 2014 00:00
Drivers—get ready to slow down. Nassau County is currently in the process of installing school zone speed cameras in an effort to enhance safety by encouraging drivers to travel with caution, as well as support law enforcement efforts to crack down on violators and prevent accidents caused by speeding.
Nassau County officials say they’re still investigating locations in the Mineola School District, while leaning towards installing cameras near the North Side or Willets Road schools in the East Williston School District. Cameras could begin operation in September.
Thursday, 28 August 2014 00:00
Nobody wants to make excuses, but sometimes when the injury bug hits, it’s impossible to overcome. Mineola Mustangs football head coach Dan Guido, entering his 28th season at helm, knows the injuries were the cause for their first-round defeat at the hands of the West Hempstead Rams last November.
“There was too many injuries on the offensive line last season,” said Guido. “It was supposed to be our strength and it ended up being a weak link by the end of the season.”
Even with those injuries, the Mustangs went 4-4 during the regular season.
Thursday, 28 August 2014 00:00
The BU15 Mineola Revolution were crowned champions of the Roar at the Shore Tournament 2014 in West Islip on Aug. 10. After dropping the opener 2-0 against North Valley Stream, Mineola bounced back to beat Freeport Premiere 2-1.
The Revolution’s offense exploded in the third game as they beat West Islip 7-0. Mineola’s final game pitted them against Quickstrike FC, which entered the contest without a loss and within a point of winning the tournament.