PSAT/School Day SAT - October 13th Information

October 13th FAQs

In this FAQ, you will find FAQs about the PSAT/ School-Day SAT that is scheduled on Wednesday, October 13th.  Each section outlines plans for the day by grade level.

General Testing FAQs

Q.  What should my student bring to school on October 13th? Please note: We are not able to loan out pencils or calculators to students due to health concerns.

  • A mask that must be worn the entire time they are in the building.
  • Two or more No. 2 pencils- not mechanical
  • Graphing Calculator
  • Water and snacks. Snacks may be consumed during breaks. We request that snacks are peanut-free and carried in a clear Ziplock bag.
  • Personal Hand Sanitizer (not required)

Q. What is prohibited from testing?

  • You are not permitted to bring any electronic “smart” device such as a cell phone or wearable technology like a Smart Watch or Fitbit. Please leave these items in your car/home.

Q. Is food permitted?

  • Fairfax County will be providing a grab and go breakfast and lunch options.  Snacks are allowed to be eaten during scheduled breaks. We request that snacks are peanut-free and carried in a clear Ziplock bag.  

Q. Who is testing on October 13th?

  • Seniors who opted in will take the SAT on October 13. Tenth and eleventh graders will take the PSAT.  Ninth graders will stay home and complete asynchronous work on October 13th. Scroll down for more details by grade level. 

Q.  I have a question that is not listed here– who should I contact?

Below you will find FAQs about the plans for each grade level on October 13th.

School Day SAT (12th Grade Only)

Q. Do all 12th graders take the SAT on October 13?

  • Only 12th graders who completed the Intent to Participate form before September 8th will be eligible to participate in the October 13th SAT.  Seniors who completed the form received a confirmation email at their fcpsschools.net address.  Students who did not complete the form to opt into the SAT test will have an unscheduled day on October 13 to participate in civic engagement or college planning and visits.

Q. When/where is the SAT?

  • The SAT will be given on October 13th at McLean during the school day. Students will report to testing rooms at 8:10 am.  Students will be notified of their testing location by email (fcpsschools.net accounts) one week prior to the exam.  Students can also ask teachers for test location information.   There will be a 2 hour early release on October 13th. 

Q.  How long is the test?  What is the schedule for the day?

  • The SAT is approximately 4 hours long.  Students will report to their first period classes for attendance at 8:10 before moving to their testing rooms.  There will be a 2 hour early release on October 13th. 

Q. Is there a fee to participate in the School Day SAT?

  • This year, FCPS will pay the fee for 12th graders who opted into the School Day SAT by the September 8th deadline. 

Q. How will my student get a score report? When will scores be released?

  • Visit sat.org/scores for more information on interpreting SAT scores and sending them to colleges. Students must have a College Board account. Students should be careful to make sure the name and information on their College Board account is the same as what they write in their test booklet on testing day. Students should use a personal email address, not their fcpsschools.net email for their College Board accounts. The College Board notes that scores will be released to students on November 3rd and to colleges by November 13th.

Q.  What should my student bring to school on SAT/PSAT Day? 

  • Students will need a photo ID, (wood) Number 2 pencils, eraser, and a graphing calculator for the SAT.  MHS will not provide calculators on test day. It is also recommended that students bring a snack to eat during breaks.  A grab-and-go lunch will be provided in the cafeteria at 12:30.  Students will need to be masked in the testing rooms, as per FCPS guidelines. For more guidelines on what is permitted in the testing room, the College Board has created a Test Day Checklist: https://collegereadiness.collegeboard.org/sat/taking-the-test/test-day-checklis

Q. How can my student prepare for the SAT?

Q. How can my student apply for testing accommodations for the SAT?

  • College Board’s deadline for SAT accommodation requests was August 24th.  Any student who has College Board approved accommodations will receive the appropriate accommodations on test day.  Please be aware that students with an extended time accommodation will finish testing after the buses depart for dismissal and will receive more information about test timing and transportation in late September/early October.  For questions about the College Board accommodation request process, please contact Robert Bouchard at @email or Ava Kaye at akaye@fcps.edu

PSAT (10th and 11th Grade Only)

In Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) and across the United States, students in grades 10 and 11 will take a Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) on October 13, 2021. FCPS will provide the PSAT/NMSQT to tenth and eleventh graders without cost. Only students in grade 11 are eligible to compete for the National Merit Scholarship; however, taking the PSAT/NMSQT in grade 10 provides students with practice for the PSAT in 11th grade and for the SAT.

Q. What test will my 10th or 11th grader take?

  • All 10th and 11th Graders will take the PSAT (Preliminary SAT/NMSQT (National Merit Qualifying Test).  The PSAT/NMSQT is a standardized test designed to promote college readiness while preparing students for college entrance assessments. It measures evidence-based reading, writing and language, and mathematics with a focus on reasoning skills, knowledge, and comprehension. These are all skills that are important for college and career readiness. The PSAT/NMSQT is created and managed by the College Board, the same organization responsible for SAT and Advanced Placement (AP) tests.

Q. How will taking the PSAT help my student?

  • Not only does the PSAT offer students practice before taking the SAT, College Board’s online PSAT score reports also provide valuable feedback to help students prepare more efficiently for the SAT.  For example, incorrect answers are linked to Khan Academy tutorials that offer detailed explanations for each question and targeted free SAT practice.  Additionally, 11th grade students may qualify for the National Merit Scholarship program.  Details on this scholarship can be found at http://www.nationalmerit.org. Students who take the PSAT are also eligible to sign up for the College Board Student Search Program, which connects students with colleges and recognition programs. More information can be found here https://collegereadiness.collegeboard.org/psat-nmsqt-psat-10/scholarships-and-recognition/recognition-programs.

Q.When/where is the PSAT?

  • The PSAT will be given on October 13th at McLean during the school day, beginning at 8:10.  Students will be  notified of their testing location by email (fcpsschools.net accounts) one week prior to the exam.  Students can also ask teachers for test location information.  Students will not attend their regular classes on October 13th but will report to first period for attendance at 8:10 and then move to their testing rooms for the day. 

Q.  How long is the test?  What is the schedule for the day?

  • The PSAT is approximately 3 hours, 55 minutes long.  Students will report to their period 1 classes at 8:10 for attendance and then move to their testing rooms at 8:20. After the test, students will have time to pick up a grab and go lunch from the cafeteria.  There will be a 2 hour early release on October 13th. 

Q. How can my student prepare for the PSAT?

Q. How can my student apply for testing accommodations for the PSAT?

  • College Board’s deadline for PSAT accommodation requests was August 24th.  Any student who has College Board approved accommodations will receive the appropriate accommodations on test day.  Please be aware that students with an extended time accommodation will finish testing after the buses depart for dismissal and will receive more information about test timing and transportation in late September/early October.  For questions about the College Board accommodation request process, please contact Ava Kaye at akaye@fcps.edu.

Q. When will my student receive PSAT scores?  

  • Scores for the PSAT/NMSQT will be available online to students through their free College Board accounts in mid-December.   Students who do not currently have a College Board account will need to create one to view scores.  Students should use a personal email address, not their fcpsschools.net email for their College Board accounts, as FCPS email may send College Board emails to spam.

Q.  What is the PSAT/SAT pre-survey? Can a student opt-out?

  • Pre-survey questions are designed by the College Board to gather information to help connect students with colleges and scholarship opportunities. Parents and guardians my choose to opt out of having students complete the survey.  Parents will need to notify the school Assessment Coach, Jennifer Beach (@email) via email by October 8th. Please include the student’s full legal name and FCPS student ID number, along with the request to opt out. You may view the pre-survey questions and access further information about this option on the SAT and PSAT Pre-Survey Opt-Out Policy webpage at https://www.fcps.edu/node/36639.  If you opt-out, please be sure to let your student know that they will not complete the pre-survey on October 13th.

Q.  What should my student bring to school on PSAT Day? 

  • Students will need (wood) Number 2 pencils, erasers, and a graphing calculator for the PSAT.  MHS will not provide calculators on test day. It is also recommended that students bring a peanut-free snack to eat during breaks.  A grab-and-go lunch will be provided in the cafeteria after testing ends.  Students will need to be masked in the testing rooms and school.

Asynchronous Day (9th Grade Only)

Q.  What will 9th graders do on October 13th?

  • 9th grade students will NOT report to the school building in person on October 13th. Red day teachers will provide asynchronous lessons for students to complete from home on October 13th in Schoology. Students in 9th grade will NOT need to log into virtual learning classes during class time with their teachers on October 13th, just complete the assignments asynchronously in Schoology.