January 2011 update
Thanks in part to funds provided by the Issaquah Schools Foundation, over 2000 sophomores and juniors took the Preliminary SAT last October and received their scores during the first week of January.
More than 50 parents attended the District-hosted informational meeting on January 5 where a representative from the College Board gave tips on interpreting scores and suggested next steps for students and families.
For those unable to attend, here are links to the materials that were distributed that evening.
What is the Preliminary SAT?
The Issaquah School District administers the PSAT to all sophomore and junior students as a part of an official school day each fall. The testing fee typically is $13.
The PSAT is the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test. It provides sophomores and juniors with the opportunity to get ready for the official SAT. The test is written and scored by College Board, the same company that writes and scores the SAT, and the testing environment is very similar to the actual SAT environment. In addition to the physical experience of taking the standardized test, each student receives personalized feedback on each section of the test, and can log into a personalized planning guide based on their test results on www.collegeboard.com The PSAT is different from the Mock SAT which is offered by school PTSA and where participation is voluntary.
The PSAT is a low-stakes testing opportunity—the scores are not sent to colleges and are not a part of the college application process for any student. For sophomores, their scores are purely for their own self-knowledge. For juniors, the PSAT scores are used as qualifying data for the National Merit Scholarship Competition, but this is the ONLY thing their scores are used for other than their own information.
Students can sign up and pay for the PSAT online during the August high school registration process or anytime before each fall's testing date. If student have a demonstrated need for financial assistance with the PSAT exam fee, contact the school principal. There are scholarships available through the Issaquah Schools Foundation.
Scores are generally available each January and the District hosts a Parent Information evening where parents learn how to read and interpret their student’s test results.