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Academic Exams Return to 'Normal'

At this time of year, there is one thing and one thing only standing between students and their holiday break: exams. 

For some, an exam comes with an ominous feeling of dread. For others, an exam provides an opportunity to show off their knowledge and to tack a few extra points onto their semester grade. For many, especially in the Upper School, exams do offer the perks of a late arrival, an early dismissal and casual clothing.

For current ninth- and 10th-graders, the Fall 2021 exams are, in fact, their first Upper School exams ever as exams did not take place last year. 

As part of our return to a more normal academic experience on campus, faculty and administrators presented students exams in math, science, history and English. 

“The goal is to help prepare students for college,” Jason Rutledge, upper school assistant principal for academics, said. “Some of their college classes may have only two or three graded assignments in total. Having a higher stakes exam is a good process to go through.” 

The exam experience may or may not have ignited fond memories for upperclassmen. 

Senior Eliza Gaskill said she has been studying nonstop for the past few weeks as some of her teachers just recently held unit tests. 

Senior Mindy Spiva said the mid-year exams in her AP classes covered a lot of material, which will be the case when she takes the national AP exams in the spring. 

Taking time to complete a comprehensive exam is an important box to check off on the academic journey and an opportunity for HIES students to prove their knowledge in core subjects.