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SAT scores rise in CMS and across North Carolina

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  • Your Schools: Score one for CMS on data accuracy
  • Download SAT results for all N.C. schools
  • College Board national SAT report
  • CMS news release on SAT results
  • About the SAT
  • About the ACT in North Carolina
  • SAT scores

    Averages for 2012-13 seniors include scores in critical reading, math and writing, with a maximum possible score of 2400.

    Charlotte region

    Iredell-Statesville: 1528

    Union County: 1524

    Hickory: 1503

    Cabarrus County: 1498

    CMS: 1473

    Newton-Conover: 1464

    Mooresville: 1459

    Catawba County: 1453

    Lincoln County: 1429

    Gaston County: 1424

    Kannapolis: 1367

    Mecklenburg schools

    Asterisks indicate charter schools.

    Providence: 1688

    Myers Park: 1653

    Ardrey Kell: 1636

    Cato: 1636

    Lake Norman*: 1597

    Queens Grant*: 1580

    Hough: 1552

    South Meck: 1547

    Butler: 1543

    East Meck: 1481

    Northwest: 1460

    Mallard Creek: 1448

    North Meck: 1446

    Olympic Renaissance: 1428

    Independence: 1420

    Berry: 1406

    Olympic Math/Science: 1380

    Hopewell: 1372

    Olympic Biotech: 1354

    Harding: 1350

    Performance Learning: 1332

    Rocky River: 1324

    Olympic Global: 1305

    Olympic Int’l Business: 1286

    Davis Military: 1263

    Vance: 1232

    West Meck: 1223

    Garinger: 1218

    West Charlotte: 1187

    Kennedy*: 1122

    Crossroads*: 1052

    Source: N.C. Department of Public Instruction and CMS



North Carolina and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools celebrated gains in SAT scores released Thursday, a possible indicator that last year’s seniors were better prepared for college.

However, it wasn’t clear how much of the gain came from a shift to the ACT, another college-readiness exam that can be used for admission. In previous years, most college-bound students in North Carolina took the SAT, but in 2012, all juniors took the ACT as part of the state’s new testing and accountability program.

SAT participation declined statewide and in CMS. Lower participation often translates to higher average scores, especially if marginal students opt out.

Whatever the cause, the CMS average on the SAT, which tests critical reading, math and writing, rose 10 points, to 1473 out of a possible 2400. Reading and writing scores rose while math stayed flat.

Superintendent Heath Morrison said CMS has provided a free SAT program called Triumph and trained principals to encourage SAT participation and boost performance.

“We are pleased to see these increases in our scores because we are placing a very strong emphasis on preparing every student for these important college-admissions requirements,” Morrison said.

The CMS average was less than the state average (1479, up 10 points) and national average (flat at 1498). But those averages include public and private schools. CMS topped the state average for public schools by eight points, and was just one point below the national average for public schools.

“It’s kind of exciting to see that we’re making progress, but our bar isn’t just public schools but every school,” Chief Accountability Officer Frank Barnes said.

Wake County Schools had a higher participation rate than CMS and a significantly higher average, 1572. In the Charlotte region, Iredell-Statesville (1528) and Union County (1524) had the highest averages.

In Mecklenburg County, school averages ranged from 1688 at CMS’ Providence High to 1052 at Crossroads Charter, which targets at-risk students.

As usual, CMS schools in the county’s more affluent areas, such as Providence, Ardrey Kell and Myers Park, topped the SAT list. Cato Middle College High, a small CMS school for juniors and seniors at Central Piedmont Community College’s northeast Charlotte campus, also landed near the top of the list, along with Lake Norman and Queens Grant charter schools. Charters are alternative public schools that don’t report to local districts.

Crossroads and Kennedy charter schools, both of which serve students who have struggled in traditional schools, had the lowest averages. In CMS, West Charlotte, Garinger and West Mecklenburg, neighborhood high schools with high poverty levels, had the lowest SAT scores.

Helms: 704-358-5033 Twitter: @anndosshelms
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