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WLNS: Sylvan Learning Owner Shares Insights on Michigan's Transition to Online Testing to Combat Declining Scores

Jessica Rollins discusses the impact of online testing on Michigan students and the importance of early intervention in education.

As standardized testing season wraps up, students from 3rd to 11th grade are completing their M-STEP tests, while high school juniors and seniors review their newly digitally adaptive SAT scores. In an interview with WLNSJessica Rollins, owner of Sylvan Learning in Lansing, Michigan, provides insights into the current testing environment.

This year marked Michigan's transition to online standardized testing, which Rollins hopes will help address declining scores observed over the past few years. She feels that students face challenges in staying engaged and navigating gaps in their education, significantly impacting their test performance.

“We’ve seen a decline in standardized tests across the board,” Rollins said. “So SAT, for example — our state average is usually in the 950s or so. Then the global average is over a thousand. And so, we are definitely seeing our students scoring below that global or national average for tests like the SAT.”

A critical issue arising from lower standardized test scores is the increasing need for remedial courses in college. Despite high GPAs, many students are unprepared for college-level work. 

“Those classes come at a really high cost,” Rollins said, “because you’re paying college-level tuition for those remedial classes that aren’t ultimately going to count for anything.”

Rollins emphasizes the importance of early intervention, recommending that parents ensure their grade-schoolers are academically caught up before reaching high school. She asserts that college and career readiness begins in elementary school, underscoring the need for a solid educational foundation from an early age.

By focusing on early preparation and addressing educational gaps, Sylvan Learning aims to help students improve their standardized test scores and be better prepared for future academic challenges.

Read the full article here.

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