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PHUHS Junior Earns Perfect SAT Score

Angela Li pic

Second time's a charm: Pinellas County student scores perfect SAT


Scores are used to impress potential colleges and showcase a student's math, reading and writing skills.

Less than 1% of students who take the SAT get a perfect score but a Pinellas County Public Schools student has accomplished that feat.

Angela Li, 17, a student at Palm Harbor University High School, scored a 1600 on her SAT exam.

"When I found out, I was working part-time at Panera Bread and I actually had a morning shift that day, so I was waiting until I could go on break to check my SAT score," she said. "When I pulled up the score, I wasn't sure it was real. I was like, 'Is this a perfect score?' I had to double check. I even sent a screen shot to my friend just to double check because I wasn't really fully comprehending."

Li said it was her second time taking the exam.

The first time she scored a 1560, so she almost didn't re-take it.

"Then my dad said, 'The school is offering it, you don't have anything to lose, you might as well take it,'" she said.

Li said a perfect score was never her primary goal.

"I just wanted at least a solid score, so that's why I didn't want to take it the second time," she said. "So it's a pleasant surprise it ended up this way."

In many ways, Li is a typical teenager. She is involved in basketball and track and field at school, and likes spending time with her friends and her cat, Katniss.

But her academic school counselor Kit Ewing calls her a "stand-out."

"I've been doing this for a very long time and I've never had a student that's had a perfect SAT before, ever. Angela is my first but hopefully not my last," Ewing said.

Li recently started learning Korean through the U.S. Department of State's National Security Language Initiative for Youth. This summer she will spend seven weeks in Seoul, South Korea living with a host family and attending a university there to further learn the language and culture.

While she's registered as an 11th grader, she has spent this school year working on her Associate of Arts Degree at St. Petersburg College-Clearwater in the Early College Program. She will graduate with her AA and high school diploma in May 2022.

Li credits her accomplishments to good time management.

"Academics have always been very important to me and my family," she said.