Former President Launches College Prep ProgramLITTLE ROCK, Ark.
Former President Bill Clinton unveiled a new program under his presidential foundation last month that will help students prepare for college entrance exams.
Clinton appeared at Dunbar Magnet Middle School in Little Rock to publicize the new partnership with Ember Media and the Princeton Review to provide free tutoring for the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and other College Board exams. The new entrance exam preparation program will include instructor training, after-school tutoring, curriculum development and online test preparation.
Clinton Foundation officials said the program is set to start in Little Rock and then will be made available at reduced cost in nine other cities: Atlanta, Cleveland, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia and Washington.
John Katzman, founder of the Princeton Review, said the new exam preparation program will develop a way for teachers to assess students’ preparedness for standardized tests without compromising their curriculum. He said test taking is a skill separate from general scholarship, so students need to prepare for the SAT separately.
“Bad test takers try to find the right answer; good ones eliminate the wrong answers. Bad ones struggle with hard questions and speed through the easy ones; the good ones take their time on easier questions because they’ll probably get the hard ones wrong anyway,” Katzman says. “These strategies are not innate. You have to learn them.”
Clinton said he believed nearly every student had the ability to go to college and should have that choice, regardless of income, but added that too many poorer students count out college and never bother to prepare for the entrance exams.
“You may not know what a gift this is,” he said of the opportunity to go to college. “You have these things here and the life of your family, your state, your world depends on you taking advantage of them.”
Clinton shared similar comments with the crowd at the annual Willie E. Gary Football Classic last month in Jacksonville, Fla.
“Every young man and woman ought to have the chance and ought to take it to go to college,” the former president told the 17,410 fans attending the game between Edward Waters College and Shaw University.
As he ended his speech, Clinton gave the crowd a challenge: “Never pass up a chance for the rest of your life to tell every young person you know that they need a college education, they can get one and American needs for them to do it.”
Clinton said he attended the game at the invitation of Gary, a South Florida lawyer and a benefactor of both historically Black schools.
The William J. Clinton Presidential Foundation has already teamed with Ember Media to produce interactive computer guides for historically Black colleges and Hispanic college applicants.
— Associated Press
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