Are a really big deal. It's not affecting my kids because they're only seventh graders, but the ninth graders are having a really rough time of it. They have class every day until 10:15 p.m. now, which is adding an hour onto an already unrealistically tough schedule, and they've been having class every weekend. They just don't seem to ever get a break. Those test scores are just so important to both the individual students, and to the school.
The entrance exam to college is even more intense though. There were headlines a while back because there were kids hooked up to IVs so that they could keep studying longer and harder. I mean, it makes a certain kind of logic to hook yourself up to a drip to keep your energy up, but I'm glad I never had to do anything like that in high school.
Speaking of IVs, it's totally what you do any time you aren't feeling so hot. Just go to the local clinic, and get them to hook you up with a drip for a couple of hours. Apparently it works great, but I haven't yet been brave enough to go try it.
p.s. Here's a link about the IV drip studying stuff. http://behindthewall.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/07/11580943-chinese-students-use-iv-drips-while-test-cramming?lite