The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

Through classes, art teachers aim to grow art appreciation

Testing space opens for students with accomodations

On+Jan.+17%2C+new+testing+rooms+were+opened+for+students+with+accommodations+during+school+hours.+The+rooms+are+in+S101.
Elspeth LaCroix-Birdthistle
On Jan. 17, new testing rooms were opened for students with accommodations during school hours. The rooms are in S101.

Correction: This story has been updated to clarify that the new testing rooms are available for all students, not just those with accommodations. Edit made Jan. 29 at 4:45 pm.

New testing rooms for all students regardless of accommodations opened on Jan. 17 and will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The testing rooms are currently in room S101, which is connected to the registrar’s offices.

The rooms, one for high schoolers and one for middle schoolers, each have a capacity for six students. 

The room will be monitored by Kelly Shepard, who previously worked in the middle school learning and counseling office. She will make the schedules and provide proctoring for students using the rooms. 

Nicole Neal, director of student services, said the spaces were negotiated in recent faculty collective bargaining agreements to provide testing services for students with extended time accommodations and students who need to make up tests during the school day. 

To reserve these spaces, a teacher will have to register a student for the date and time.

Teachers will designate the time and number of carrels they need to reserve. Then they will input information about the student: the amount of time for the text and then how much extended time, and what materials they need. It will then be sent to Ms. Shepard who will create a schedule for the coming week. 

Unlike the previous testing spaces, like the after-school testing room on the third floor and testing with a learning coordinator, this space will be open during class time allowing for students to work testing into their schedule rather than working around it. 

This new testing space had a big push from history teacher Christy Gerst. Ms. Gerst said she has been an advocate for these testing spaces since she started teaching at U-High. 

“Since I arrived at Lab nearly a decade ago,” Ms. Gerst said, “I have been advocating for a separate dedicated proctoring space originally as a common practice with CPS and suburban public schools to support students with learning differences. I then broadened that advocacy to all students, as I discovered the real challenges of juggling the after-school proctor makeup testing with other responsibilities, including extracurricular and commuting schedules.” 

After long negotiations, Ms. Gerst’s goal was implemented. She believes it will help both students and teachers.

“I anticipate that our student body will experience less stress with the additional supports built into the actual school day,” she said. “I also anticipate that teachers will experience more support, as they often proctored during their preparatory periods, often foregoing meal and bathroom breaks.”

View Comments (1)
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Chloe Alexander, Arts Editor
Chloë Alexander is a member of the Class of 2025 and serves as the arts editor. She joined the journalism family in the 2021-22 school year as a ninth grader and previously served as an assistant editor. Chloë enjoys journalism because it allows her to create a space for Lab students to be represented through writing. Her favorite story that she has written is “‘SOS’ showcases a wide range of styles and themes.” Outside of working on the Midway, she is a Maroon Key, plays the piano and enjoys reading. Awards: 2023 Journalism Education Association National Student Media Contests, Boston convention: Honorable mention, feature writing 2023 Journalism Education Association National Student Media Contests, San Francisco convention: Honorable mention, news editing, headline and current events 2023 Scholastic Press Association of Chicago, special coverage: (with Clare O’Connor, Amy Ren and William Tan), superior 2022 Columbia Scholastic Press Association Gold Circle Award: Briefs writing, first place (with Louis Auxenfans, Joaquin Figueroa, Chloe Ma, Amy Ren, Katie Sasamoto-Kurisu), Vol. 98, Issue 8 (March 10, 2022), Page 3
Elspeth LaCroix-Birdthistle is a beginning photojournalist and a member of the Class of 2026. Elspeth's favorite part of photojournalism is taking photos of school events and being a part of the behind-the-scenes of the Midway and other school-related activities. Outside of school, Elspeth enjoys reading and dancing. She is also a member of the varsity girls soccer team.

Comments (1)

All U-High Midway Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • S

    Susan ShapiroJan 23, 2024 at 10:32 am

    Finally! Thank you, Ms. Gerst, for your advocacy and support for students who need time!

    Reply