A+ Higher Scores is a test-prep program helping students earn higher scores on the SAT and ACT to get into college and receive scholarships. Founded in 2009 by Sheba Lowe-Brown, the program offers a variety of classes and daily instructional seminars to help students across the state.
“We have some students who have no experience and some who took the test but want to identify and work with those problem areas, and score higher,” she said. “All of our students say college is in our future. The SAT and ACT is part of that process, so they work on improving the scores to make the process easier.”
Lowe-Brown, current president of A+ Test Prep and instructor of continuing studies at Duke University, attended the University of North Carolina on a full-ride scholarship. She worked as a teacher for Wake County Public schools for 18 years, from 1993 to 2011, including several years as an English teacher at Leesville Road High.
“I do miss working with students, and that is part of the job I love the most, working with a great variety of students,” said Lowe-Brown. “It is a great way to help students academically without being confined into a 90 minute block.”
Many teachers are finding that students do not read or write enough outside of school. Reading comprehension and writing positively correlate; without substantial reading early in grade school, the motivation for free writing is hindered.
“What I also find is that people do not work outside of class; they expect programs like ours to work on them like magic. Students also need to continue to test themselves outside of our class in order to prepare.”
The program is offered for four days over the course of two weeks leading into the tests. Each class runs from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. The first two days cover reading comprehension; the third and fourth days cover math and writing, respectively.
FlexPrep is another option offered by this program. Student groups of five people or more create their own class schedule. It is a great option for student athletes and busy students in general in need for a customized SAT and ACT prep. Organizations, churches, and community groups also have opportunity to set up an A + class at their location.
“It is the passion for what Vincent [Lowe-Brown’s husband and North Carolina Central admissions director] and I do. We were college students, so we understand the process. College admissions today is more competitive, so it is a lot tougher for students to get into the college of their choice.”