Applying for SAT and ACT Testing Accommodations: Part 2

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In Part 1 of this series, we examined some of the issues surrounding the application process for SAT and ACT testing accommodations. Here is a checklist:

• Familiarize yourself with documentation requirements for each testing service, shown here for the SAT and here for the ACT. There is no pattern of consistent agreement between the ACT and the College Board, so you may want to apply to both services.

• If you need independent testing to meet the documentation requirements, make sure you work with a qualified professional who understands the testing requirements, per the testing guidelines.

• Re: in-school records, be extremely diligent about building your child’s file showing the academic impact both before and after in-school accommodations have been received. Even if your child has an IEP, a 504 plan, and a diagnosis, the testing services look for this paper trail, so start constructing it well beforehand.

• Enlist the help of your child’s guidance counselor to assemble and submit the necessary paperwork. Apply in 9th or 10th grade, to anticipate accommodations for SAT Subject Tests or AP exams that might be taken well before junior year.

• Note that it can take 7-8 weeks for a decision after each application or appeal. In our experience, many students are turned down the first time they apply, so it is important to give yourself enough lead-time. If you are not approved, appeal the decision. You are entitled to call and speak to the evaluator to learn why your child was turned down.

If you have already traveled this road, perhaps your experience can help another parent experiencing similar frustrations. Please add your story to our comments!

Still have questions? Call us … we have lots of experience with students who need testing accommodations, and are here to help.

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