Florida students show slight gains on SAT results
The latest SAT results are out today, and they're either good news or bad, depending how you look at them.
On the plus side, Florida's mean score rose slightly to 489 for critical reading, 490 for math and 472 for writing -- up in all three categories from a year earlier. State officials also are celebrating that Florida's Hispanic students their peers nationally on all subsections of the test, and Florida's black students saw their mean scores rise while the national average remained unchanged. See a state report here.
“I am pleased that our students are improving their SAT performance. The data released today are proof that their hard work is preparing them for the next step in education and life,” interim commissioner Pam Stewart said in a news release.
On the down side, Florida's mean score is down from 2002, and remains below the national average. And overall, the SAT Report on College and Career Readiness reveals that just 43 percent of SAT takers in the Class of 2012 graduated "with the level of academic preparedness associated with a high likelihood of college success."
The news fueled criticism of the nation's move to test-based accountability systems.
"Proponents of NCLB and similar state-level testing programs promised that overall achievement would improve while score gaps between racial groups would narrow," Bob Schaeffer of FairTest said in a news release. "Precisely the opposite has taken place. Policymakers need to embrace very different policies to reverse this trend. Yet, so-called ‘reforms’ such as Race to the Top and NCLB waivers will actually increase the focus on test-scores in the nation’s public schools. The likely result is more damage to school quality and educational equity."