​Welcome to Mrs. Lawson's counseling resource page.  On this page, you will find resources for college and test preparation.  

College Resources

There are many college access programs around the City of Philadelphia that provide an array services to students that need assistance with things such as searching for colleges, assistance with the financial aid process, SAT preparation and even additional rigorous coursework that will prepare students for college.  Some of the programs are listed below.  Click on the links of all of the words in BLUE to access more information about the programs.

Naviance is an online college and career platform that allows students to create a plan for their futures by helping them discover their individual strengths and learning styles and explore college and career options based on their results.  Students must log in through their philasd.org login and click on the link to get started.

My College Quickstart - A free personalized feedback and college planning tool based on your PSAT Scores.

Let's Get Ready - Let's Get Ready provides low-income high school students with free SAT preparation, admissions counseling and other support services needed to gain admission to and graduate from college. Services are provided by volunteer college students who also serve as role models and mentors.

Philadelphia Futures - Philadelphia Futures is a nonprofit organization that provides Philadelphia’s low-income, first-generation-to-college students with the tools, resources and opportunities necessary for admission to and success in college.  Philadelphia Futures also provides high schools with the Step Up To College Guide which is the premier college guidance resource for high school students and their families.

The Free Library of Philadelphia Passport To College - This college prep program offers workshops during the school year at  library branches and/or partner locations. Workshops will take students step-by-step through the college prep completion process.

Upward Bound at Temple University - The Temple University Upward Bound Program will prepare Philadelphia Public and Charter High School students for admission to institutions for higher learning and success in the collegiate environment through intense academic enrichment, a summer college immersion experience, enhanced cognitive and critical thinking, and extensive interpersonal development through positive social interactions. Applicants must be current 8th, 9th or 10th grade students attending a Philadelphia public or charter high school.

Parental Support for College Students - Transitioning from high school to college is an exciting and empowering experience. This site will help parents work with their students on this transition.

Test Registrations

Students may take the SAT and ACT to get into college.  Students must register for them online and one fee waiver per person is available for each test this school year.  They may use an additional fee waiver from outside test prep programs or organizations that they are affiliated with if they choose to take it multiple times this year.  Students are allowed TWO fee waivers for both the SAT and the ACT and any additional tests taken after that must be paid for.  Our school code for registration is 393568.



College Board + Khan Academy

College Board and Khan Academy have partnered up to offer test preparation using online instructional videos and interactive exercises.

Website: https://www.khanacademy.org/test-prep

The Free Library


E-mail: collegeprep@freelibrary.org

The Free Library offers free SAT Prep classes at many of their branches. Please contact your local branch for schedule.

Community College of Philadelphia offers an online, instructor-led class

The 6 weeks SAT/ACT prep course is $119

A new session starts each month.

For more information, go to: http://ed2go.com/ccp2go and search “SAT Prep”


A test preparation and academic tutoring company with experienced instructors who focus on foundational academic gaps to improve test scores. A number of SLA students have participated in TEACH and have reported increases in test scores and a positive overall experience.

Contact: Maria J. Ferzola - Lipiros at  info@teacheachstudent.com or 215.923.8322

TEACH Partnership with Free Library

TEACH will be offering a FREE 90 min workshop this Fall via our partnership with the Free Library of Philadelphia. Contact them for more details.

Philly Tutors

Group and private tutoring

8-week sessions of weekly 2-hour group classes $280

North Light Community Center, Manayunk, 267-254-1787

For more information, go to: www.phillytutors.com and click on “Tutoring Options”

The Princeton Review

Offers online, classroom, small group or private

3451 Chestnut St., 215-382-0269

For more information, go to: www.princetonreview.com

Kaplan Test Prep

Offers online, classroom, small group or private review, costs vary

1528 Walnut St. 215-546-3317

3925 Walnut St. 215-243-1711

For more information, go to: http://www.kaptest.com and search “SAT Prep” or “ACT Prep”

Then, in the upper right corner, use the “Looking for Options Near You?” search to find various opportunities near you.


The Official SAT Study Guide, by the College Board (big blue paperback, about $15 on Amazon)

The Real ACT Prep Guide, by the ACT.org (big red paperback with CD-Rom, about $20 on Amazon)

Cracking the ACT, by the Princeton Review (big white paperback, about $13 on Amazon)

The Official Study Guide for All SAT Subject Tests, by College Board (blue paperback, about $13 on Amazon)

“Unofficial” study guides for the individual subject tests are also helpful

Websites with free prep materials:





- you can sign up for “SAT Question of the Day”, get free practice tests/materials, or sign up for an online course for $69.95

http://www.actstudent.org/testprep/ - you can sign up for “ACT Question of the Day”, get free practice tests/materials, get tips for taking the test, or sign up for one-year access to online prep for $19.95


The following information includes a general testing timeline with specific info about different types of testing.

PSAT: Sophomores and Juniors all take the PSAT in October. For juniors, this serves as the qualifying exam for the National Merit Scholarship program.

SAT & ACT: Most colleges and universities require one of these admission tests. Juniors are advised to take either exam in late winter and again in the spring. Seniors may take an additional test in the fall of their senior year if needed.

SAT Subject Tests: Following the completion of high school academic courses, students may elect to take the SAT Subject Test on the May or June testing dates. Itis suggested that freshmen and sophomores consult with their teachers regarding the appropriateness of taking these exam at this time. Juniors generally take these tests in May or June. SAT Subject Test scores are only required by highly selective colleges and universities.


The following links are resources designed to help you determine which standardized test -- the SAT or the ACT -- will best suit your strengths and preferences. They highlight the differences between the two exams, as well as providing information about which students will do best with which test.




College Tours 2015-16

Juniors will be sent a survey in the beginning of December to determine college interest and tours will be arranged for students to attend in early spring a series of tours to help in the decision making process. Some of the college tours may require a fee for travel. Students are encouraged to apply for early admission in the beginning of their Senior year.

Tips for an Effective College Visit - http://www.phillytrib.com/the_learning_key/tips-for-an-effective-college-visit/article_7542dabc-63c9-51ee-a451-ee8563f5f11d.html

Bucket List for High School Seniors http://forhighschoolcounselors.blogspot.com/2015/04/school-counselor-bucket-list-for-high.html

Scholarship Information

Any pertinent information on college scholarships will be listed here.

Ten Elite Schools Where Middle-Class Kids Don't Pay Tuition


Scholarships for African American Students - http://www.college-financial-aid-advice.com/scholarships-for-blacks.html

Help for Undocumented Students

Junior College Night