Thousands of Oklahoma’s eighth- and 10th-grade students who took part in ACT’s EXPLORE and PLAN tests this year have been recognized by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education as Oklahoma Scholars for 2001.
“It bodes well for Oklahoma’s future when so many of our young people are succeeding in school today,” said Chancellor Hans Brisch. “These students will serve as role models to other students on what kind of courses to take to prepare for college, and provide motivation for early academic preparation for college and work.”
In its second year, the Oklahoma Scholars program recognizes students for their strong academic performance. The recognition program is a creation of the State Regents’ Educational Planning and Assessment System (EPAS).
Students scoring at or above the 95th national percentile in one or more of the composite or content areas on the EXPLORE or PLAN test received individual certificates for their accomplishments. The content areas include mathematics, science reasoning, English and reading components.
Students take the EXPLORE test in the eighth grade and PLAN test in the 10th grade. Testing in the EPAS program culminates in the 11th and 12th grades with the ACT assessment. A total of 7,254 eighth graders and 6,933 10th graders received achievement certificates for the 2000-2001 academic year.
EPAS is the result of collaboration between the State Regents and ACT, Inc., a nationally known, not-for-profit organization that provides assessment, research, information and program management services in the broad areas of educational and career planning and workforce development to millions of people worldwide. The EXPLORE and PLAN tests gauge students’ academic progress toward college preparation and also provide feedback to schools, counselors, parents and the students themselves.
Oklahoma Scholars is supported by Oklahoma’s state Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP). Certificates were mailed to Oklahoma junior highs and high schools in late April and were presented to the students during their schools’ respective end-of-year awards assemblies.
Oklahoma’s statewide GEAR UP grant has been matched by more than $25 million from state and partner resources. With funds totaling $45.5 million, GEAR UP receives 45 percent of total funding from the federal government and 55 percent from other organizations.