You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Thousands rush to take GED

A new, tougher, more expensive exam becomes effective in January.


The number of Ohioans taking the GED test jumped 68 percent over the last six weeks as students rushed to complete it before a new high school equivalency exam replaces it in January.

According to the Ohio Department of Education, 5,741 people took the GED or General Educational Development test between Nov. 1 and Dec. 16., compared to 3,953 people who took the test during the same time period in 2012.

The increase in test-takers showed people were trying to complete all of their requirements before the new exam goes into effect, said John Charlton, a spokesman for ODE.

The new test will cost more, be fully computerized and be more challenging, officials said.

The cost of the test will increase from $40 to $120.

Ohio allocated $2 million each year for the next two years for vouchers to subsidize the $80 increase for students.

The vouchers will be tied to Career Technical Planning Districts, Charlton said. “We’re still waiting on the specifics of how the voucher will work,” he said.

Approximately 24,000 students drop out of school in Ohio every year, Charlton said.

In 2012, the latest year figures are available, 20,275 people took the GED test in Ohio, and 14,959 passed, according to the GED Testing Service.

Aligning with Common Core

The GED was created in 1942. It was last changed in 2002. GED is changing the test now to better align it with the new Common Core standards which most states, including Ohio, are implementing and to make students more competitive in the job market, said CT Turner, a spokesman for GED Testing Service.

There’s been some concern that the test might be too difficult because more analysis and reasoning will be required, Turner and those who work with GED students said. “The truth of the matter is we’re still measuring high school equivalency in January and it’s still going to be about as difficult as high school students are performing, which hasn’t dramatically increased,” Turner said.

More emphasis is being placed on career and college readiness, Turner said.

A more difficult level, a college and career readiness indicator referred to as GED with Honors has been added, Turner said. Only about 12 percent of students who pass the GED go on to pursue higher education, Turner said.

The computerized format will also allow students to receive results quicker and get detailed feedback on their performance, Turner said.

Studies show students perform better on the computerized test — an 82 percent passage rate compared to 72 percent on paper, he said.

Educators said some students are uncomfortable with computers, which can penalize them in the workforce.

Most companies require applicants to fill out applications online or at a computer kiosk, Turner said.

“Really basic digital literacy skills are really basic literacy skills for today and they are required for jobs. They are required for these college and career training programs that most people will have to go into to get the jobs that are available in Ohio,” Turner said.

More sites added

The computerized test, which must be given at Pearson Vue designated test centers, will be administered in more places, Charlton said. By mid-January, Ohio will have 120 to 130 sites — up from 64 when the test was paper based, according to Charlton.

In addition to more sites, students will gain more flexibility in scheduling their tests because it can be done by computer at any time, Charlton said.

Many students rushed to take the test because they were concerned about paying more and using a computer, said Kathy Trangenstein, chief GED examiner for Greene County.

“I have a few who are very, very nervous about doing the computer test. They haven’t been exposed to the computer and they’re just kind of afraid of it, ’’ Trangenstein said.

Greene County Career Center boosted its testing sessions from two to eight a month in December, Trangenstein said.

She said very few students were turned away and they were able to take the test at other sites.

Terri Bennett, director of the Butler Tech ABLE/ESOL/GED programs, said the school will work with students to grow their digital knowledge.

“We’re actually revising our curriculum to include more and more computer basic skills,” Bennett said.

The cost of going with an online testing company was a big concern in Ohio, said Amy Leedy, adult education supervisor for Miami Valley Career Technology Center.

“The cost increased dramatically and this is a population that is trying to get a high school equivalency and a lot of times those financial requirements are a bigger burden (for them),” Leedy said.

Everyone who takes the new test will be considered a first-time test-taker and can apply for the subsidy, Leedy said.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

Georgia storms kill 11, injure 23 as threat continues
Georgia storms kill 11, injure 23 as threat continues

Eleven people are dead and 23 are injured after strong storms moved through Georgia Saturday night, into Sunday morning.  State emergency management officials confirm seven of the deaths are in Cook County. Officials with the Brooks County Sheriff's Office confirmed two deaths to Channel 2 Action News. Both people were in the same home in...
Ohio Brownie uses special effects video to help promote Girl Scout cookie season
Ohio Brownie uses special effects video to help promote Girl Scout cookie season

An Ohio Brownie made a video to promote Girl Scouts cookie selling season.  But Yula Douglas of Beavercreek didn't want to make just any video. She wanted the full suite of green screen effects, multiple settings, and even animal actors (it includes pet rats).  Yula scripted and directed the video with a little help from her parents...
Organizers cancel Springfield curling tournament
Organizers cancel Springfield curling tournament

A curling tournament that brought visitors from across the United States and Canada to Springfield has been cancelled. The Champion City Bonspiel, which was held last May at the NTPRD Chiller ice rink, 301 W. Main St. near Curl Troy curling club, won’t be held this year, according to a release on the organization’s website. The decision...
Trump softening tone after slamming celebs, media over Women’s March
Trump softening tone after slamming celebs, media over Women’s March

Then just an hour-and-a-half later, Trump sent another tweet clearly softening his tone toward the protesters. He tweeted "Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don't always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views." Trump's tweets came after the White House slammed the media and pop star Madonna...
Rain chances going up as temperatures go down this week
Rain chances going up as temperatures go down this week

Rain chances higher today and even higher Monday Temperatures slowly falling this week Chance for snow returns by the end of the week TODAY: Mostly cloudy with highs in the middle to upper 50s. Chance of rain for the southeast Dayton metro area this evening. TONIGHT: Showers possible. Temperatures falling into the middle 40s. MONDAY: ...
More Stories