When it comes to the Scholastic Aptitude Test, Canton wants to do better, administrators told the Board of Education Tuesday night.
The town recently received SAT scores for the class of 2013. Most colleges use the test as part of their admission process and students are scored in critical reading, math and critical writing. The Class of 2013 scores were 545, 551 and 549 respectively. Scores range from 200 to 800 and Canton is well above state and national averages.
While the scores were some 30 points below the previous year, Assistant Superintendent Jordan Grossman said it’s well known that particular class performed exceptionally well so their peak doesn't concern him too much. Looking back over the past several years, scores have actually been fairly "flat." That’s the more troubling part, according to Grossman. He wants to see sustained growth.
The scores have been discussed among school administrators
and with the board’s curriculum subcommittee, Grossman said.
“Our kids performed well but we want to be better,”
The district will develop action steps to try and improve scores
over time, he added.
Grossman said that he is also concerned with the fact that only 77 percent of the 2013 seniors took the test, the lowest percentage on a chart he provided that goes back to 2006.
The test can be an important part of the college admission process and even help students obtain financial help, Grossman said. He called it "high stakes" testing.
“We need to start educating our students and stressing the importance
of college readiness,” he said.
That also applies to other tests such as PSAT and ACT,
Board members praised administrators for starting the
“Taking a lead in this and having the conversation may set us
apart a little bit,” board chair Leslee Hill said.
Grossman cautioned that it would not be a quick process.
“This is going to take time,” he said, adding, “This is
something I think we can do.”