In the increasingly high stakes game for market share and the corresponding “wooing of states” that has been going on between the ACT and SAT, it appears the ACT suffered a serious misstep in Ohio. The Ohio Department of Education is protesting the ACT’s decision to invalidate hundreds of test takers’ scores from an April test after it sent “incorrect versions” of the test to 21 Ohio school districts.
Reynoldsburg (OH) Superintendent Tina Thomas-Manning wrote to the ACT stating, “Many of our students are depending on these scores to use for their college applications. Since they had recently taken the ACT in the district on April 19, none of our students are scheduled to retake the ACT on June 10, the next national ACT test date. Retaking the ACT, even in October of this year, means many of our students will inevitably miss college and university application deadlines.”
The ACT did not notify students of the error until after the deadline for the June 10 ACT had passed and, obviously, the ACT’s offer of a voucher for a future test was not warmly received.
Under a new Ohio law, the state’s school districts are required to give the ACT or SAT to all high school juniors free of charge. Most chose the ACT this year and Ohio picked up the $5.25 million tab for the tests. Don’t be surprised if Ohio becomes an SAT test state.
Earlier today, the ACT reversed its decision and announced it would release the scores of the roughly 1,000 Ohio students who took the incorrect version. It also stated it “deeply regrets” the anguish the entire situation created.