Aiken County’s 2011 public school graduates scored lower than members of the previous graduating class, while Edgefield County’s trend was the opposite, according to local SAT results released Tuesday by the South Carolina Department of Education.
The school districts in Aiken and Edgefield counties also saw fewer graduates take the test in 2011, bucking statewide and national trends.
Aiken County’s mean composite SAT score for 2011 graduates was 1448, a 12-point drop from 2010. Edgefield County’s 2011 score was 1466, a 16-point increase from the previous year. Both districts were above the South Carolina mean composite score, which for 2011 graduates was 1436, a seven-point decline from 2010.
Fox Creek High School had the largest increase of any Augusta-area public school, with its 2011 graduates posting a mean composite score of 1417, 100 points higher than the 2010 score. Academy of Richmond County had the biggest drop in the region, with its 2011 graduates posting a mean composite score of 1285, a 74-point decline from 2010. The biggest local drop on the South Carolina side came at South Aiken High School, which posted a 2011 mean composite score of 1461, 72 points lower than 2010.
The highest local public school score was at John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School, whose 2011 mean composite was 1666. The highest on the South Carolina side was 1508 at Strom Thurmond High School.
The lowest area public school score was at Glenn Hills High School, with a 2011 mean composite of 1141. The lowest on the South Carolina side was 1292 at Wagener-Salley High School.
South Carolina’s district- and school-level scores were not available last week, when statewide results, along with those for Georgia and the nation, were released.
The delay was due to a change in the calculation method done by the College Board. Through the 2010 graduating class, the College Board had counted scores of tests taken through March of the senior year. But starting with the 2011 class, the organization began counting tests taken as late as June because of an increase in the number of students taking the SAT that late.
Because the “apples to apples” comparison of tests taken through June in each of the past several graduating class years was not immediately available to the South Carolina Department of Education, it opted to not release those results until they were available, spokesman Jay Ragley said.