MARIETTA — The SAT scores for both Cobb and Marietta school districts dropped in 2012.
For Cobb, the average score decreased by two points to 1520 from last year’s 1522. Marietta scores dropped to 1459 for 2012 from 1482 in 2011.
However, both districts’ scores were better than the state average of 1452, but only Cobb students outperformed the national average of 1498.
In Cobb, 5,790 students from 16 area high schools took the SAT, five students fewer than in 2011.
The schools that recorded the highest SAT scores were Walton, 1743; Pope, 1645; and Lassiter, 1636. At Walton, 628 students took the test, 394 at Pope and 461 at Lassiter.
The three Cobb schools that recorded the lowest scores on the test were Osborne, 1230; Pebblebrook, 1278; and South Cobb, 1323. At Osborne, 174 students were tested, 248 at Pebblebrook and 255 at South Cobb.
“These scores tell me that our students are well-prepared to compete at the college level,” Cobb Superintendent Dr. Michael Hinojosa said. “We know that the district’s SAT average isn't going to increase every year, but we did see marked improvement in several of our student groups as we continue to focus on closing the achievement gap. The scores also show us some areas that need greater attention, including our students whose native language is not English.”
In Cobb, black students’ scores increased by 14 points to 1336, Native American students’ increased by 49 points to 1528 and Asian students’ increased by 17 points to 1707.
Hispanic students’ scores dropped 26 points to 1403. The average score for white students declined by one point to 1618.
For Marietta High School, not only did the average decrease this year, but also the number of students tested in 2012 dropped from 274 in 2011 to 246 seniors last year.
“While there are factors that may have caused a decline in our scores, we certainly need to improve our performance next year,” Marietta Superintendent Dr. Emily Lembeck said.
Lembeck said the district exceeded the state in two areas: mathematics and writing. Marietta High students’ average reading score was 486; mathematics, 496; and writing, 477.
Lembeck also said individual student groups continue to outscore the nation.
White students outperformed their national peers by 58 points, with an average of 1636. Black students did the same by scoring 75 points higher with an average of 1348.
“As we continue to narrow the performance gap between these students groups, our overall scores should also improve,” Lembeck said.
Statewide SAT scores indicate that Georgia’s 2012 senior class increased seven points over last year’s average as the national average decreased by two points.
Additionally, state statistics showed that more students took the test in 2012. The percent increased by one point from 80 to 81 percent.
There was also an increase in the percentage of minority students taking the SAT, up to 47 percent from 46 percent last year. It was 39 percent in 2007.
The SAT is a college entrance exam that is developed, administered and scored by the College Board. It is designed to test the subject matter learned by students in high school and the critical thinking skills necessary to succeed in college.
The test has three sections: critical reading, mathematics and writing. Each section is worth 800 points, and the highest possible score is 2400.