Arlington Public Schools students scored higher overall on the SATs than other Virginia students and the national average, according to results released by the College Board earlier this week.
“I think our students continue to demonstrate that they are high achieving,” said Superintendent Pat Murphy. “We continue to see an increase in the number of kids taking advantage of this opportunity and we support that.”
The class of 2012 scored an average of 1641 on all sections of the test, which amounts to 124 points higher than the average for Virginia students and 143 points higher then the national average.
The College Board oversees the SAT, which has a highest possible score of 2400. Arlington Schools fell just under the average that .
The average Arlington Public Schools score represents a 14-point increase over the previous year.
“I see a lot of things going in the right direction,” Murphy said.
Murphy did express concern, however, about the persistent achievement gaps for black or Hispanic students.
“I want to make sure we are focused on that as a community,” Murphy said.
White students scored an average of 1804, while black students scored an average of 1330, Hispanic students an average of 1483, and Asian students an average of 1552.
Murphy said that the school system starts preparing students for getting into college as early as middle school.
“Students in middle school are taking Algebra 1,” Murphy said. “We’ve seen an increase in the number of students taking that… That is getting them prepared for high school, so by the time they enter (high school) they may have earned high school credits.”
He continued: “That could open it up to them taking college credit courses, which increases your probability to being accepted into a postsecondary institution. I underline, though, that determining aspirations for children is a family decision.”
The school system also has an Office of Minority Achievement that facilitates community events and encourages parent participation for minority students.
All students also have access to a College Night at 7 p.m. on Oct. 17 at Ballston Common Mall, which will feature hundreds of colleges attending to distribute information on college preparation.
“We also have rigorous courses …SATs are just one indicator,” Murphy said. “We don’t want to be blinded by one indicator or one set of scores.”
By the Numbers
Wakefield Washington-Lee H.B. Woodlawn Yorktown 1398 1622 1828 1747
SAT Results Average Score by Race or Ethnicity
Number TestedTotal Total 2012 953 1641
2011 932 1627
2010 795 1660
2009 757 1623 Asian 2012 100 1522
2011 109 1598
2010 106 1593
2009 77 1553 Black 2012 126 1330
2011 136 1316
2010 105 1310
2009 102 1352 Hispanic 2012 193 1483
2011 177 1450
2010 123 1438
2009 150 1405 White 2012 493 1804
2011 468 1790
2010 454 1815
2009 422 1778