Much has been said in the media recently about the national decline in SAT scores and the increased number of students taking the exam, speaking as if the decline in scores is proof that the educational system is failing America’s young people. It is a complex issue.
A research project completed by SAS, a North Carolina statistics company, showed numerically what we feel intuitively. As more “B” and “C” students take the test, one would expect overall scores to drop. The SAS study showed when participation rates increase by 20% the average score drops 58 points. If true, Pasadena ISD beats the trend. Since 2009, the district’s participation rate increased 51%, with 1,393 students taking the SAT last year. Based on the study, our SAT scores should drop 142 points over that time period. Instead, the district SAT average dropped just 27 points.
It’s a positive statistical development. We find the best news in the increasing number of Pasadena ISD students taking the test and giving college a try, many of whom are the first in their families to enroll in college.
We are not content with the score. We have work to do, but we are greatly encouraged by our students.