WHS teams with Princeton Review to offer free SAT practice test

Friday, January 22, 2010
By Joe Domelowicz

High school aged students in the town of Winthrop will be able to take a free SAT Practice test at Winthrop High School on Saturday, February 6 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the test will then be followed up by a ‘Scores Back’ report back to students and parents on February 24 at 6:30 p.m.

“This is a free opportunity to all students in grades 9, 10 and 11 to take a practice test and look at the results with their parents and SAT counselors,” said Winthrop High School Principal Gail Conlon. “And, it is open to Winthrop students who go to other schools and wish to take part in the program.”

According to Conlon, the free practice test is part of a partnership with the Princeton Review test prep company, which offers SAT Preparatory courses to high school juniors. However, simply taking the free test and sitting through ‘Scores Back’ program does not commit anyone to take the Princeton Review course.

“Last year we had 125 students take the free practice test, and of them about 25 took the course. It is an expensive course,” said Conlon. “But the kids get a chance to see the test in actual test conditions and the parents get to hear about how their kids did, what the scores mean and how colleges use scores to determine acceptances.”

According to Conlon, taking a practice test can be very helpful to students who are preparing to take the test for real in the spring, especially juniors who have never seen the test before and do not know what to expect.

“It gives them a baseline, it shows them, in terms of the SAT, what their strengths are and what they might need to work on,” said Conlon. “The actual score doesn’t mean anything, nobody sees it but the student and the parents, but it can give kids a sense of what to expect and maybe help them decide if they need a test prep course, or if they just want to start strengthening certain skills.”

Conlon also noted that getting a chance to see how they do on the SAT course can also help students start to make decisions about where they might want to go to college.

“This kind of a test can help students start to plan their futures and their road to college and determine what schools might be a good fit for them,” said Conlon. “A Harvard education might not be right for everyone, but we all go to schools where we can succeed, and a practice test can help make that decision a little easier.”

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