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SAT slide continues for CMS
District averages drop for third straight year
 
Published Monday, September 24, 2012 9:08 pm
by Herbert L. White

Charlotte-Mecklenburg students fared worse on the Scholastic Assessment Test in 2012, the third straight year of decline that mirrors state and national trends.


The average CMS total score in 2012 was 1463, a 19 percent fall from 1482 the previous year. The drop was larger the state average of 1469, down from 1475 in 2011.


“We pay close attention to these results because they are one indicator of our students’ readiness for college-level work,” CMS Deputy Superintendent Ann Clark said in a prepared statement. “We think that the rigor in the new Common Core standards will help us to get these scores moving upward.”


The number of students taking the SAT, which is often used to determine college readiness, rose nationally and in North Carolina, but dropped in CMS, which still has a higher percentage of participation than the U.S. A record 1.66 million high school seniors took the test last year.


The SAT measures knowledge and skills in mathematics, critical reading and writing. The maximum score is 2400, or 800 on each section.
The study found:


• National math scores were unchanged at 514, but dipped in North Carolina a couple of points to 506 from 508 and CMS fell to 503 from 507.


• CMS critical reading scores fell to 487 from 495 in 2011 and North Carolina declined by two points to 491. The U.S. average was 496, compared to 497 a year ago.


• CMS writing scores declined seven points to 473 from 480 a year ago. North Carolina dropped to 472 from 474 and the national average fell to 488 from 489.


CMS’s test participation rate, which has historically been higher than the national average, dipped to 67.5 percent of eligible high school juniors and seniors in 2012 compared to 68.5 percent last year. Sixty-eight percent of N.C. students took the test, up 1 percent from last year. Nationally, participation rose to 52 percent, up from 2 percent over last year.

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