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2020 The Lost Year: Getting into elite colleges despite pandemic

Families are turning to experts to help their students score high on the ACT/SAT.
Published: Feb. 23, 2021 at 11:31 PM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) -The pandemic is making it more difficult for high school seniors to get into elite colleges and universities, but some families refuse to allow 2020 to be the lost year for their students. Many families have reached out to STARS Test Prep and Tutoring for help.

“A lot of families were unsure if they should take the ACT or SAT to get into college because a lot of schools were going test-optional and families didn’t know what that meant,” explains STARS founder Greg Owens, who started the company in 2003 with veteran educator, Mona McGhee. “So there was counseling along the with test prep that we had to do.”

“It was highly recommended by a lot of seniors that I know,” says Colette Seagur, a junior at Findlay High School who drives an hour to Toledo to attend STARS. “They said it was the best program that they took so my mom said ‘sign her up.’”

Many elite schools like Yale, Harvard, and Princeton offered test-optional admission this year, but some students decided to take the SAT or ACT to give them an edge. A high score can also help students land scholarships.

“It’s test-optional, not test-bind,” says Owens. “Many students feel it was important to submit a high test score.”

“I am not sure what school I want to get into,” says Colette, who is taking the practice ACT. “But I am looking at the medical field so I know I need to get into a good college so I can get into a good medical program.”

Colette says she gets stressed about these types of tests, but she isn’t anxious because confidence comes with preparation.

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