Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

High School Test Scores Up; Some Areas Lag

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

High School Test Scores Up; Some Areas Lag

Article excerpt

Every high school in the county with the exception of one

had at least one area in the recently administered High School

Competency Test that fell below the state's standard for

critically low scores.

However, overall, the district saw a marked improvement from

last year's scores, and none of the schools is in jeopardy of

being on the state's critically low list as the test is only one

component of the criteria for placing schools on the list.

The biggest improvement came at Orange Park High School, which

last year scored at a critically low level in both the

communications and mathematics portions. This year the school

increased its passing scores by 10 percent in communications and

5 percent in math, making it the only school in the county

without a critically-low section.

"Personally, I'm pleased because a couple of schools took a big

jump," said Carol Eberhardt, director of school improvement.

"But we don't want any schools to have any critically low

scores."

The High School Competency Test was taken by nearly 1,500

high school juniors in October. The multiple-choice exam

measures communications and mathematics skills at a ninth-grade

level. Students must pass the test to graduate, and can retake

it until they pass.

The statewide test is one part of the multi-part criteria used

to determine critically low schools. In communications, 85

percent of the students must pass the test or it is considered a

critically low score. In math, 80 percent must pass.

Middleburg High School also improved. Last year, the

school was critically low in both areas, and this year 80

percent of the students passed the math section. It did,

however, remain critically low in communications.

Clay High School was critically low in both communications

and math, compared to last year when it was critically low

only in math.

For the second consecutive year, Keystone Heights

Junior-Senior High School was critically low in math with 78

percent of the students passing. …

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