ACT, Advanced Placement, and PSAT/NMSQT Information

ACT 2023


Date: April 11th, 2023
Location: Helena High School


Doors open @ 8:00am

Need to be set in seat @ 8:15am


On April 11, Helena Public Schools will administer the ACT to all juniors.¬†The ACT serves as Montana‚Äôs statewide high school assessment exam under the ‚ÄúEvery Student Succeeds Act‚ÄĚ (ESSA). The ACT is also¬†a national college admission exam that measures college-preparedness in the areas of English, math, reading, science, and writing.

This year, the Montana Office of Public Instruction is mandating that the test be offered in an online format only, whereas previously the ACT was a paper-and-pencil test. No paper-and-pencil tests can be offered for this testing date at this time.

The new format will require much of our high school staff to assist on testing day, either as proctors (ACT requires at least three staff proctors per testing room) or to provide technical support. In addition, the test must be administered on the district’s secure computer server, which creates logistical challenges in terms of testing locations and the availability of computer bandwidth for regular classes. The testing will require the use of all three district high schools: Capital High, Helena High and PAL.

As a result, school attendance will be optional on Tuesday, April 11, for 9th, 10th, and 12th grade students.

School is mandatory, as usual, for all high school juniors on April 11. If your student is a junior, please be sure they arrive at school in time to be seated in their testing room by 8 a.m.


ACT Preparation

  • ACTBootCampInformation2023.docx
  • A note from the Lewis and Clark Public Library: We have a wonderful resource on the Library website called Peterson’s Test Prep. Students would need to have a library card but if we¬†can¬†help with them getting cards.¬†If you go to the library website and look at the headings, you will see Research. Once you click on that, you will find a list which starts with A-Z List of Databases. Click on that. On that list you will see Peterson’s Test Prep. Click on this and it will take you to the website. In the search box type- ACT Prep. This will bring up a number of headers with ACT information. If you click on the first one, it will show you where you can access practice tests etc. It will ask you to set up an account so you can keep track of your progress. If it takes you to the log-in page, under the log-in is a new user sign-up.

Day of exam have your student bring:

  • Photo ID
  • Pencils (#2 only)
  • Calculator (see list below)
  • An extra computer mouse, if you have it.
  • A CHARGED CHROMEBOOK WITH CHARGER. If a student does not bring their Chromebook and charger on the day of the test, they will need to go home and return for the makeup day.¬†

Day of exam what NOT to bring:

  • CELL PHONES- Any student found with a cell phone will be¬†dismissed¬†from the test.¬† This can jeopardize the scores of all other students testing.¬†Please leave cell phones in vehicle, at home or in lockers.
  • Backpacks
  • Food/Drink (we¬†will provide snacks and drinks)
  • Reading Materials
  • Hats
  • Watches (we will project a clock for all students to see)
  • **Please be aware that we will confirm with each student before they enter the testing facility that they do not have a cell phone.**

Prohibited Calculators:

  • We will NOT be providing back up calculators for students who do not bring one for the test.¬† The¬†following¬†calculators with built in computer algebra systems¬†ARE NOT¬†permitted during the ACT:
  • Texas Instruments: All model numbers that begin with TI-89 or TI-92 and the TI-Nspire CAS-Note.¬† *The TI-Nspire (non-CAS is permitted)*
  • Hewlett-Packard: HP 48GII and all model numbers that begin with HP 40G, HP 49G or HP 50G
  • Casio: Algebra fx2.0, ClassPad 300, ClassPad 330 and all model numbers that begin with CFX-9970G
  • Electronic writing pads or pen-input devices. *The Sharp EL 9600 is permitted*
  • Calculators built into cell phones or any other electronic communication devices
  • Calculators with a typewriter keypad (letter keys in QWERTY format) *Letter keys not in QWERTY format are permitted*
  • **Using a TI-89 is the most common reason students are dismissed from the ACT for prohibited calculator use.**


  • Doors will open at 8:00A.M.
  • Students need to be in their seats¬†at¬†8:10AM.
  • Students will be done with the test at approximately 1:30-2:00. Busses will run as usual at 3:15.
  • If you have any questions, please contact your student’s building administrator for ACT.

COVID-Safety Protocols mandated by the district at the time of testing will be in place during ACT testing, this may include masks, physical distancing, and symptom screening.


If you have individual testing questions, please contact the appropriate testing coordinator at HHS:

ACT Testing Coordinator and Administrator: Willie Schlepp 

ACT 504 Accommodations: Jamie Pandis 

ACT Special Education Accommodations: Merren Marks 

ACT Self-Paced Prep Program through AHEC:

Looking for some help preparing for the ACT or SAT? Montana AHEC is offering this self-paced course for only $50 (the program usually retails for $299!) Send an email to or call him at 406 457 8008 to register.

Advanced Placement Testing

Advanced Placement (AP) courses offer students the opportunity to get a head start on college while in the supportive environment of a high school classroom. Students can earn college credit or placement by taking the AP exam at the end of the school year, while at the same time achieving a higher level of learning.

Your AP scores could earn you college credit or advanced placement (meaning you could skip certain courses in college). Use this tool to find colleges that offer credit or placement for AP scores. View the AP Credit Policy here.

Taking an AP exam is optional, but we encourage students to consider the opportunity.

If you have any questions regarding AP Exam registration and payment, please contact Helena High’s AP Coordinator: Ellaina Staldine,406-324-2224,

More information regarding testing dates, locations and expectations are communicated to students as the AP Exam date nears.



Dear Parent/Guardian & Student,

We are excited that you have chosen to take on the challenge of an Advanced Placement (AP) course. AP courses offer students the opportunity to get a head start on college while in the supportive environment of a high school classroom. Students can earn college credit or placement by taking the AP exam at the end of the school year, while at the same time achieving a higher level of learning.

Taking an AP exam is optional, but we strongly encourage students to consider the opportunity.

If interested in sitting for an AP exam, please review the steps below to ensure that you are successfully registered for your AP exam(s).

Step 1: Join your AP class on CollegeBoard 

Log into the CollegeBoard MyAP site at using your CollegeBoard profile and apply the ‚ÄėJoin Code‚Äô (access code) you received from your teacher for each of your subjects. Join Codes are subject, teacher and class period specific.

CollegeBoard profiles are the same accounts used to collect prior year PSAT/NMSQT¬ģ or AP¬ģ Exam scores. Do not create a new account if you already have one.

If you have never created a CollegeBoard account, create one by clicking on ‚ÄėCreate Account‚Äô on

Once you have joined the online AP Class group, you will be prompted to complete the MyAP Registration Profile pages. Be sure to use your full legal name when setting up your profile.

Step 2: Pay your exam fee online at Deadline to register and pay is November 1, 2022. 

The cost of each exam is $100. Partial fee waivers are available for students who are on free/reduced lunch. If eligible, you will select to apply the waiver in the payment portal on Revtrak.

*Exams ordered after the November 1st deadline are subject to a $40 late add fee.

*Exams cancelled after November 1st are subject to a $40 cancellation fee.

Step 3: Confirm registration for exams in MyAP.

Log into your CollegeBoard account at:¬† ¬†Once in MyAP click¬†‚ÄúRegister for Exam‚ÄĚ for each class section you are enrolled in. From the next screen, select either ‚ÄúConfirm Registration‚ÄĚ (if you’re taking the exam), or ‚ÄúNo‚ÄĚ, if you will not be taking the AP exam for that subject.

If you have any questions regarding AP Exam registration and payment, please contact Helena High’s AP Coordinator:

Ellaina Staldine     406-324-2224

More information regarding testing dates, locations and expectations will be communicated as we near the AP Exam dates.

Parents may find more information about the AP program and exams by visiting:


How can I earn college credit through AP¬ģ?¬†

If you take the AP¬ģ exam in May, you potentially can earn college credit by earning a score of a 3, 4, or 5 or the exam. To determine what score you will need for a particular college, check out the College Board‚Äôs website at¬†AP¬ģ¬†Credit Search


What if I miss the November 1st deadline to submit fees? 

It is CRUCIAL to meet the deadline so that we may secure a test for you. However, we are able to register students late, but a $40 late fee will be applied.


Can I cancel my exam?

Refunds/Cancellation: Students who submit a cancellation request by November 1st, 2022 will receive a full refund of exam fees submitted. To cancel, please email If you cancel after November 1st, a $40 cancellation fee will be applied to your refund.


Can I change when I take the exam?  

Exam times are set by The CollegeBoard. All AP Exams must be taken only at the times established by The CollegeBoard. If need arises to test at a later date, you will need to notify Mrs. Staldine at  as soon as possible. A $40 late test fee may apply depending on the reason for requesting the late test date.  The scheduled late-testing dates are May 17-19th.

**Please look at your Spring sports and extra-curricular calendars for potential conflicts with the AP Calendar available at: