September 26, 2013
The Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Class of 2013 earned strong results on the SAT college entrance exam, significantly outscoring their peers across the state and the nation. MCPS also showed significant growth in SAT participation and performance among students who are economically disadvantaged.
MCPS graduates earned a combined average score of 1648, outscoring graduates in the state of Maryland by 165 points and across the nation by 150 points. In MCPS, 69 percent of graduates took the SAT, the same percentage as public school graduates in Maryland. Nationally, 43 percent of public school graduates took the SAT.
“Our graduates continue to perform extremely well on the SAT, demonstrating their commitment to excellence and readiness for college,” said Christopher S. Barclay, president of the Montgomery County Board of Education. “We must continue to make sure our students are not only prepared for the SAT, but also have the knowledge and skills they need to be successful in college and the work place.”
The overall score for MCPS graduates fell three points from 2012, but is 11 points higher than the Class of 2011. Scores for graduates in the state of Maryland fell 4 points from 2012 while the national average was unchanged. The SAT, administered by the College Board, is composed of three sections: critical reading, mathematics and writing. Each section is worth 800 points, for a total of 2400.
A growing number of MCPS graduates who receive free- and reduced-price meals (FARMS)—an indicator of poverty—took the SAT in 2013, and performance for this subgroup improved significantly. More than 48 percent of 2013 MCPS graduates receiving FARMS took the SAT, an increase of 84 students. Those students earned a combined score of 1382, an increase of 22 points compared with the Class of 2012.
“Overall our students are performing at a high level on the SAT, and they are significantly outperforming students across the state and the nation. That is something to celebrate,” said Superintendent of Schools Joshua P. Starr. “But there are still gaps in performance that must be addressed, so that all of our students can thrive in their future and have success after graduation. I know that the staff of MCPS is dedicated to doing the hard work necessary to make sure all students are well prepared for the demands of the 21st century.”
African American and Hispanic graduates of MCPS performed well on the SAT and outscored their peers in the state and the nation. For the class of 2013, 61 percent of African American graduates took the SAT and earned a combined average score of 1397, an increase of 8 points from the class of 2012. African American graduates in Maryland scored 1255 and nationally scored 1278.
More than 47 percent of 2013 Hispanic MCPS graduates took the SAT, earning a combined average score of 1451, which is a decrease of 32 points from last year, but significantly higher than graduates in the state (1387) and the nation (1354).
Other highlights of MCPS performance include:
– In 2013, 11 MCPS high schools saw an increase in overall score compared with 2012. The schools with the largest increases were Rockville High School (+57 points), Damascus High School (+42), Walt Whitman High School (+38), James Hubert Blake High School (+22) and John F. Kennedy High School (+21).
– The schools with the highest combined average score were Walt Whitman High School (1901), Poolesville High School (1857), Winston Churchill High School (1839), Thomas S. Wootton High School (1822), and Richard Montgomery High School (1781).
– Seven MCPS high schools saw an increase in SAT participation andperformance among graduates who receive free- and reduced-price meals: Bethesda Chevy-Chase, Montgomery Blair, Paint Branch, Rockville, Seneca Valley, Watkins Mill and Thomas S. Wootton.
– Four MCPS high schools saw an increase in SAT participation andperformance for African American graduates: Bethesda-Chevy Chase, Clarksburg, Sherwood, and Watkins Mill. Three MCPS high schools—Montgomery Blair, Paint Branch and Poolesville—saw an increase in the participation and performance of Hispanic graduates.