- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
SAT scores dipped in Charles County schools while AP scores showed a slight gain. Superintendent James E. Richmond said he is not satisfied with the results.
Charles County Public Schools had a composite score of 1447 of a possible 2400 on the SAT, the widely used college entrance test.
The number is down from 1455 last year.
Results for Advanced Placement tests also were released by the school system Tuesday.
The average score on the exams rose slightly to 2.22 from 2.14 in 2011. Nearly 90 percent of students taking the rigorous AP classes took at least one test in 2012.
Richmond said he won’t be satisfied until all students are reaching 4s and 5s. “We should be there,” he said.
SAT scores for graduating seniors are reported by the College Board.
in the county this year, there were 847 test-taking seniors representing 39 percent of the class.
Data show there were fewer seniors taking the test last year, 830, but those students also represented 39 percent of the class.
Richmond said he wished he knew the reason for the decline.
Charles County was below the state average of 1487 and the national average of 1498. Both state and national numbers have decreased from last year.
“We’re looking at [SAT data] as we do every year. We’re looking at what works and where we need to make changes,” Richmond said.
Richmond is looking to break the barrier and get above the state and national score. The system has done it in years past.
He said he is meeting with principals to address any SAT issues.
Two of the six high schools showed an increase in SAT results: North Point High School increased by five points to 1450 this year with 60 percent of seniors taking the test, and Thomas Stone High School jumped 21 points to 1398 with 42.7 percent of seniors taking the test.
Stone Principal Michael Meiser said that while the school’s scores did increase, they are lower than what he would like to see.
He would like his school to be at the county average or higher, he said.
Meiser said he was proud, however, to see students had increased their math and writing scores.
He said staff volunteered to work with students as they prepared for the SAT, with prep courses during and after school.
Another area he thought was beneficial to his school was increasing awareness among students and parents about the importance of both the SAT and ACT and which might be better for individual students.
Meiser said the school did not steer any student away from taking the SAT; in fact, it had the second-highest participation rate in the county.
A common misconception, Meiser said, is that all students need the SAT to get into college. He said many schools accept the ACT.
Staff looked at PSAT results and results from a combination mock test of the SAT and ACT to determine what test a student might be best suited for.
Meiser said he is not satisfied with any test results fully because the school is “always looking to improve.”
La Plata High School students averaged 1611 on the SAT with 28.3 percent of graduates taking the test. Henry E. Lackey High School students averaged 1430 with 30.6 percent participation. Westlake High School students averaged 1423 with 20.6 percent participation. Maurice J. McDonough High School students averaged 1392 with 38.1 percent participation.
Comparing the scores
2012 2011 2010
Lackey 1430 1445 1403
1611 1672 1645
McDonough 1392 1415 1524
North Point 1450 1445 1445
Thomas Stone 1398 1377 1471
Westlake 1423 1492 1501
Charles County 1447 1455 1486
Calvert County 1517 1528 1540
St. Mary’s County 1539 1548 1530
Maryland 1487 1492 1502
United States 1498 1500 1509
Source: Charles County Public Schools