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PSAT Cancellation: What Happened and Why It was Rescheduled so Quickly

Stock photo by Nguyen Dang Hoang Nhu via Unsplash

Sophomores and juniors won’t wait long for the chance to take the PSAT. After a system error abruptly prompted the cancellation of the test scheduled for Wednesday Oct. 11, administrators quickly rescheduled for Tuesday.

The College Board, the group that administers the test, called about 16 hours before the test was scheduled to start to alert Rockhurst administrators about the issue.

“The PSAT informed us the afternoon before the original test date that students using the most current version of the Apple iOS for iPad would [be unable] to answer submissions successfully,” said assistant principal Mike Wickenhauser.

School officials swiftly made the difficult decision to cancel the PSAT. They say they did so in the best interest of the students, as it would have been unfair to proceed with a flawed examination. The schools that didn’t postpone experienced issues.

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“Some schools who chose to go ahead with the test, despite the likely issues, regretted that decision,” said Wickenhauser.

Students who had spent weeks preparing for the PSAT were disappointed by the turn of events. Many had hoped to use the test as an opportunity to gauge their academic progress and potentially qualify for scholarships. 

“I was upset and surprised, because after studying for weeks, the test was canceled out of nowhere,” said sophomore Jacob Kendall.

In response to the cancellation, the school assured students and parents that they worked with the College Board to address the error. Administrators also have a backup plan in place should any problems arise.

“We will have extra devices on campus in case we have iPad compatibility issues,” said Wickenhauser.

The new testing date is only 13 days after the original one. Wickenhauser says they rescheduled it quickly so the students who spent time getting ready didn’t do so for nothing.

“I am definitely prepared and ready to take on the PSAT, and though my studying was disrupted, I feel I am ready, along with many other sophomores,” said Kendall.

In addition to being a potential measuring stick for academic progress, the PSAT is the only test utilized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation to determine who qualifies for the prestigious National Merit Scholarship Program.


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About the Contributor
Sam LaSala, Staff Reporter
My name is Sam LaSala, and this year will be my first on the newspaper staff. In the past, I have always loved to write and talk to people for information that could be used on writing projects. I am extremely social, outgoing and creative. These attributes give me the confidence to say that I will be a great addition to the Rockhurst High School newspaper team. I want to write for the school newspaper, because I would love to be able to use my writing skills to my advantage to cover stories and other intriguing topics. Newspaper will not only be great for me now, but in the future as well. This subject can improve my writing skills now and give me more knowledge, and it will also look great on my resume for future schools and jobs. At the moment I am not involved in any clubs or extracurriculars at Rockhurst, but this sophomore year I plan to join a club and use it to my advantage as well. Getting involved in a club could get me more introduced to the school and other aspects as well--especially for the future. My goals for the future are to get above a 3.8 GPA and, possibly, even become a leader for various projects at the school. With these intentions in mind, I hope that they could boost my resume to get into as good a college as possible. As I progress in the newspaper this year I am enthusiastic to see what else it brings to the table.
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