“A district-wide implementation of the SAT® and PSAT/NMSQT® sets the foundation for access to college admission, increased scholarship opportunities and a system of support to ensure students stay on track as they pursue their post-secondary options. It punctuates our commitment to ensuring students have access to multiple post-secondary pathways.”
Last month, Trenton Public Schools did something for the first time. As a system they expressed a commitment to preparing students for post-secondary options by administering a full-scale SAT Day, where students in grades 8 through 12 were given the opportunity to take the SAT®, PSAT/NMSQT®, and PSAT 8/9 without cost to their families. While many of the district’s students qualify for fee waivers, the savings for those who do not is close to $50.
Students in grade 12 were given the opportunity to take the SAT which is an admission test accepted by all U.S. colleges. Attendance in school on the day of the test guaranteed students the chance to take the SAT. Students who take the SAT® receive access to video lessons and personalized study resources through the Khan Academy®. In addition to helping students get on the path to college, participating in SAT School Day offers the additional benefit of not compromising weekend work schedules or family obligations. It also reduces stress associated with high stakes tests due to being able to take the assessment in a familiar location. Most importantly, taking the SAT increases post-high school opportunities due to college application fee waivers, free score reports, and access to Roadtrip Nation, a web-based resource for exploring majors and careers of interest.
Students in grades 10 and 11 took the PSAT/NMSQT, an important first step in making college plans. The structure of the test is similar to the SAT, which makes it a good way to practice and prepare for that assessment. Additional benefits for students who take the PSAT include scholarship opportunities for eleventh grade test takers, information about colleges and major courses of study that are of interest for all students, score results that help students and counselors develop study plans to improve SAT performance, free access to SAT Practice on Khan Academy® and post-secondary planning resources at Roadtrip Nation.
Students in grades 8 and 9
participated in the PSAT 8/9, a critical first step toward making college
plans. It assesses the same skills and
knowledge as the SAT and PSAT in a way that is appropriate for eighth and ninth
grade students. The benefits to taking
the PSAT 8/9 are that students receive a measurement of current areas of
strength and areas needing improvement. The score reports that schools receive help
counselors assist their students in planning for improvement on future high-stakes
tests. Finally, test takers receive access
to AP Potential, which identifies ninth graders likely to succeed in advanced
The pride that district and
school leadership took in offering this opportunity seemed to transfer to
students who demonstrated an overall 90 percent participation rate. Collectively, 88 percent of high school
students took the assessment while middle school participation soared to 93
The Trenton Public Schools is
especially proud of Hedgepeth Williams Middle School of the Arts where 100
percent of its students participated in the PSAT 8/9!
About Us: Trenton Public Schools is a comprehensive public school district, serving students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade from Trenton, New Jersey. Thirteen elementary schools, four middle schools, and three high schools service the district’s 13,949 students. The mission of Trenton Public School is to ensure that all students graduate with a vision for their future, motivated to learn continually and prepared to succeed in their choice of college or career.