School Day SAT – How and why by Phil Pearson

A number of weeks ago I announced that Corbett School District was sponsoring a school-day SAT for all Juniors who attend Corbett High School. The date for this test has been set – February 27 – and the registration process has begun. During lunch on Wednesday and Thursday right before break I set up lunch-time register-and-eat-pizza sessions for in-district juniors and most showed up and got it done. I’ll be tracking down those who weren’t able to for whatever reason in January in order to make sure that EVERY in-district junior has the opportunity to take the SAT on the 27th. During January I’ll also be distributing information about accessing the College Board’s online SAT prep course. If you’re a charter family, contact Mr. Dunton with questions. CSD is covering the costs and logistics of test administration but registration for charter and in-district kids is being handled separately. Mr. Dunton has the necessary information for charter kids. I’m the contact person for in-district kids.

Those are the logistics – the how – of administering the school day SAT. The larger question is why. Why would we want to set aside a part of a school day and a little bit of money so that every junior in Corbett could take the SAT? Part of the answer is mathematical. Early in the year we had committed to providing access to the College Board’s online SAT prep course. It turns out that we can provide access to the prep course AND administer the SAT test for LESS THAN the cost of just providing the course. It’s one of the rare two-for-less-than-the-price-of-one deals that didn’t make sense to pass up.

The larger reason, though, is that it has to do with Every Kid. I’m a believer in Every Kid. I’m devoted to Every Kid. I believe that Every Kid should get a chance to step up to the plate and swing for the fences. That includes the kids that love physics like me (admittedly there aren’t that many of us) and the kids that love the javelin. That includes kids who are great artists, great musicians, great goalkeepers, and great friends. I want every kid to be able to choose for himself or herself from a wide range of great opportunities at the end of high school, and that includes the chance to apply to a college or university. Taking the SAT is a necessary step in that direction.

Unfortunately, not every kid has the resources necessary to get to the SAT test site on test day. For some it’s a money thing. For others its a transportation thing. For others, applying to a college or university is not something they’ve ever thought was going to happen, so taking the SAT seems like a distant, foggy idea. For a lot of 16 and 17 year olds, managing the logistics or overcoming the intimidation factor is a daunting road block. But I believe in Every Kid, and so we’re getting busy removing Every obstacle we can think of. We’re administering the SAT on campus during the school day, so money is not an issue, transportation is not an issue, logistics and intimidation are not issues, and imagination is not an issue. Every Kid might not end up finishing a degree at a 2 year or 4 year institution, but the SAT opens that door of possibility. It certainly can’t hurt, and – who knows what might happen? Every Kid deserves the chance.