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Tuesday, October 13, 2015


PSAT Directions-October 14

Students registered for tomorrow's PSAT (Wednesday, October 14) should report immediately at the to their assigned testing sites at the beginning of school (7:20 AM).  The assignments and test locations are below;

Back Gym     

Last names beginning with A to O

Lecture Hall

Last names beginning with P to Z

Students should bring with them two #2 pencils and a calculator.  A short bathroom break will be scheduled during which students will also be allowed to eat snacks. 

College & Career Ready: 

What Does It Mean?

College and career readiness have been buzz words in talks regarding education these past few years, even if few people really know what these buzz words mean. With that said, there also seems to be little agreement on how to measure it.  After all, you can’t measure what you can’t see.

It’s safe to say that little respect is given to the high school diploma in 2015. We also know that jobs for high school graduates are not much better than for those without a degree. But should high schools prepare ALL students for college?

Perhaps a more accurate term to use would be post secondary readiness. It’s an arguable point whether or not every student should attend a four-year college upon successful completion of high school (a controversial and debatable issue), but it appears necessary these days for every student to pursue some form of post secondary education, whether it be a two-year associate’s degree, a certification program, or apprenticeship. Without this training, there seems little hope for anyone to secure gainful employment that can support an independent adult life. 

So, perhaps the sensible objective of a high school experience should include the default option that puts graduates in a place where they are prepared to attend a post secondary program - whether they choose to or not.

How Do You Measure 

Post Secondary Readiness?

Accepting that post secondary readiness means high school graduates are prepared to achieve success in introductory-level courses required of programs in higher education, two valid and reliable measures that predict readiness are the ACT and SAT. The benchmark scores for each are 21 (composite score) and 1550 (total on three subtests with current SAT format), respectively. What this means is that students who earn these minimum scores exhibit evidence of being ready to perform successfully in higher education.

It’s not a coincidence that community colleges, for example, require all students to take placement tests before enrolling in college-credit bearing courses. Students who earn at least a 450 in the SAT Critical Reading or Writing portion are immediately eligible for enrollment in college-level English. A score of at least a 550 in Math allows students to enroll in college-level math. Without either, and without reaching established benchmarks on placement tests, students are then funneled into remedial courses for which they pay AND earn zero college credits. If you’re wondering, about 40% of high school graduates are placed in these remedial courses when they matriculate to community colleges.  It's a false hope they carry with them upon high school graduation when this hope is met with subsequent disappointment.

A few years years ago, the State University of New York (SUNY) system conducted a study to evaluate the predictive power of SAT scores in determining college graduation rates. An essay (go ahead - click on it) written by the former SUNY Provost revealed that there was a significant difference between those SUNY schools that raised the bar on SAT scores for admission versus those that didn't. What's the significance of this? It points to the level of preparation an entering student has achieved (yes - as measured by performance on a standardized test that students may choose to take more than once) that determines the extent to which each student can take advantage of the academic opportunities made available to them in subsequent years. And it predicts pretty accurately, so say the supporters of this view, if s/he will earn a college degree.

Of course, most colleges will report that SAT/ACT benchmarks combined with solid grades in challenging high school courses serve as the most accurate predictors for success in higher education.

New England Regional Student Program

Would you like to know how you can attend a public college or university in another New England state and still pay in-state tuition?  Click here to find out.

Exploring College OptionsStudent/Parent Information Sessions

Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, Penn, and Stanford are combining to offer student/parent information sessions on their schools.  Representatives from these schools will present information about admissions and answer questions as well.  The session scheduled in Connecticut will be held on Thursday, October 15 at 7:30 pm in the Farmington Marriott (860.678.1000).  For more information, click here.

College Visits

Wednesday, October 14 @ 1 pm/Yale University

Thursday, October 14 @ 8 am/Bryant University

Thursday, October 14 @ 1 pm/College of the Holy Cross

Friday, October 16 @ 11:30 am/University of Saint Joseph

Monday, October 19 @ 10 am/Sacred Heart University

Monday, October 19 @ 1 pm/Western New England University

Tuesday, October 20 @ 8 am/Tufts University

Tuesday, October 20 @ 9:30 am/SCSU

Thursday, October 20 @ 10:15 am/Brandeis University

Monday, October 26 @ 10:30 am/ECSU

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