Registration is now open for Idaho’s SAT® School Day, a free, in-school college entrance exam scheduled for Wednesday, April 17.
Funded by the state of Idaho, SAT School Day is an example of how states can utilize the nation’s oldest and most thoroughly researched college entrance exam to help promote a culture that encourages more students to pursue education after high school. Last year, more than 16,000 juniors across the state participated in Idaho SAT School Day. More Idahoans than ever before entered their senior year of high school with a key college admission credential.
“Idaho SAT School Day is a great opportunity for Idaho’s high school juniors to take one step closer to going on to postsecondary education,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna said. “I encourage all students to take advantage of this testing day in their school as well as the tools and resources the state offers, such as the free, online preparation course. I am pleased we can provide such unique advantages to our students to ensure more of them graduate from high school prepared to go on to postsecondary education and not need remediation once they get there.”
Ken Edmunds, president of the Idaho State Board of Education, said, “Preparing students for success beyond high school is essential to Idaho’s economic growth and prosperity. The statewide SAT day provides students with the opportunity to identify areas of strength and weakness so they can better prepare for postsecondary education.”
In 2007, the Idaho Legislature approved new high school graduation requirements, beginning with the Class of 2013. The new requirements included three years of math, three years of science, and a requirement for all high school juniors to take a college entrance exam. The state now pays for students to take the SAT or ACCUPLACER through a contract with the College Board.
High school juniors can register for Idaho SAT School Day online or through their school’s guidance counselor’s office. Registration ends Wednesday, April 3. All Idaho public schools with 11th-graders have been sent Idaho SAT School Day vouchers with printed numbers to give to the students to register.
Registering is easy. Students only need four things: an email account, a free College Board online account, their EDUID (State ID) number, and their Idaho SAT student voucher, available from their school counselor. Every SAT registration includes up to four free score reports that can be sent to colleges and scholarship services. Registering for the SAT also enables students to participate in the College Board’s Student Search Service®, through which students can let colleges, universities and scholarship programs know they are interested in hearing from them. Students participating in the Student Search Service also have the opportunity to receive educational and financial aid information from colleges, universities and scholarship programs.
Research has shown that taking a rigorous curriculum in high school is the best way to prepare for college, and for the SAT. To help Idaho students familiarize themselves with the SAT and prepare for Idaho SAT School Day, the Idaho State Department of Education and the College Board are providing all public school juniors with free access to the Official SAT Online Course™, available through their school. Additional free and low-cost SAT practice tools and resources, including a free, full-length practice test and The Official SAT Question of the Day™ are available on the College Board’s website.
Students can use their SAT scores to research colleges and universities on the College Board’s free comprehensive college planning website, The BigFuture™. This site was created with the Education Conservancy and in consultation with students and educators to help make the college planning process simpler and more accessible. BigFuture walks students through each step of the college planning process, from finding colleges that fit, to writing a college essay, to applying for financial aid. At the site, students can watch videos from real students giving tips on college planning, such as what do to on a campus visit, and students can explore college options with advice from the schools themselves. Students also have access to Skills Insight™, which is a general guide to help students determine their current skill level in reading, writing and math — the areas tested on the SAT.
Created by educators and aligned to Common Core State Standards, the SAT tests the reading, mathematics and writing skills and the knowledge students acquire during high school. The SAT provides a fair, national benchmark for assessing a student’s college and career readiness. Scores for each section of the SAT are reported on a 200- to 800-point scale, with additional subscores reported for the essay (ranging from 2 to 12) and for multiple-choice writing questions (on a 20- to 80-point scale). The SAT provides valuable feedback to students and families, including a detailed breakdown of a student’s score in each section, with insight into academic strengths and areas for improvement.
“Ensuring that as many high school students as possible have the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in college is more important now than at any point in our nation’s history, so we are pleased to see states and districts guiding students to a key college credential by hosting SAT School Day,” said College Board Vice President James Montoya, a former dean of admission. “College is a major family financial investment, and the SAT helps students identify the colleges and universities where they have the highest likelihood of academic success. When used in combination with high school grades, the SAT is the most valid predictor of first-year college performance. ”