About Magnolia Prep

Magnolia Prep was founded in 2012 by John Burford, a recent Princeton graduate. We do private tutoring and group courses for the ACT, SAT, and PSAT. We currently have branches in 5 cities: Shreveport, Louisiana; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; New Orleans, Louisiana; Louisville, Kentucky; and Orlando, Florida.

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About Magnolia Prep
Our Founder

Our Founder

John Burford, IV is the founder and owner of Magnolia Prep. He currently resides in Orlando, Florida.

John is a 2012 graduate of Princeton University, where he won the Ivy League Championship in Fencing.

In high school, John was a Presidential Scholar (1 of 150 students nationwide chosen to meet and be honored by President George W. Bush), a National Merit Scholar, and an AP Scholar with Distinction.

John scored a 35 on the ACT, a 1590 on the SAT, and a 234 on the PSAT. He is the author of 2 ACT textbooks and 2 SAT textbooks.

In his spare time, John enjoys hiking, biking, reading, spending time with friends and family, and practicing his Catholic faith.

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Our Services

We specialize in in-home private tutoring for the ACT, SAT, and PSAT. We also do group courses through schools and foundations that we partner with, as well as college admissions essay consulting.

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Our Services
Our Curriculum

Our Curriculum

Our curriculum is different from any other test prep company’s curriculum.

We only use official SAT’s and ACT’s made by the test-makers, so students have no surprises on Test Day.

We have our students take the test officially twice, just in case they have a bad day.

We teach all of our students our proprietary Math Diagnostic, which covers every Math formula and concept on 8 official SAT’s and 9 official ACT’s.

We have our students learn how to do every problem they get wrong, so that when they see that kind of problem next time, they’ll get it right.

We use our own textbooks, authored by our founder, John Burford, a Princeton graduate who scored a 35 on the ACT and a 1590 on the SAT.

We update parents after every session so they always know how their child is scoring, if they’re doing the homework, etc.

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Our Results

Our average ACT score improvement is 3 points. Typical score improvements range from 2 to 5 points.

Our average SAT score improvement is 120 points. Typical score improvements range from 80 to 200 points.

Our Results


  • My son’s SAT score improved 180 points which made him eligible to receive the Florida Bright Futures scholarship. The investment in Magnolia Test Prep paid for itself within his very first college semester!

    Jennifer Gaw
  • Kudos to John’s program. My daughter’s scores rose significantly, and she has now qualified for the top level of Florida’s Bright Futures scholarship program.

    David Rath, Asst. Principal at Montverde Academy
  • Nice place, good guy, great service, great location, great books, just a great guy.

    Ryeen Hariri
  • John did an amazing job tutoring my son Alec for his SAT. He improved his score over 100 points. I highly recommend him!

    Laurie Berube
  • If you are looking for an SAT tutor, I definitely would recommend Magnolia Prep. John improved my score by over 100 points and gave me the help I needed to get a great score.

    Alec Berube
  • We hired John and he did an amazing job with my son. Not only did he help him improve on his ACT score, the prep also helped him improve 100 points on his SAT. John is bright, punctual, professional, and really related well with my son. Thanks, John, for all your good work!!

    Daron Gallina, Director of College Guidance at Lake Mary Prep
  • I can not say enough about John’s knowledge and professionalism. He was very patient and helpful with my son while preparing for the SAT. I would recommend Magnolia Prep to anyone looking to boost their test scores.

    Kathy Cardegnio
  • John is an amazing tutor and man. He is very down to earth. I couldn’t be more grateful for everything he has done to help me in my entire SAT process. He is extremely knowledgeable in every aspect of the SAT and ACT. Overall great experience with John and Magnolia Prep!

    Thomas Gaw
  • We had a wonderful experience with Matthew Knight of Magnolia Prep. My son only did one series of lessons with Matthew but he helped raise my son’s ACT score 3 composite points. It was truly incredible work. My only disappointment was the fact that we didn’t sign him up for the sessions earlier as we started working with Matthew at the end of my son’s junior year.

    We are thrilled with the results and plan to use Magnolia Prep for our daughter when she begins her ACT testing. We will definitely start working with Magnolia for her earlier than we did my son. The results are incredible and we plan to utilize Magnolia Prep as the main component to prepare her for her college exams.

    Frankie Edenfield

Current and Former Partners

Are you interested in tutoring for the SAT, ACT, or PSAT?