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Churchill High School Students Among Top SAT Performers

Scores show discrepancies in county public school performance.

Montgomery County public school students are outscoring their peers nationwide on SAT tests, and students at Winston Churchill High School are even exceeding their county counterparts.

Montgomery County public school students in the class of 2012 "set an all-time record on the SAT and significantly outperformed their peers across the state and the nation on the college entrance exam," according to a Montgomery County Public Schools announcement. The report comes at a time when SAT reading scores across the country are at a record low, according to the Washington Post.

"MCPS graduates scored an average combined score of 1,651 on the SAT, which is 184 points higher than state of Maryland public school graduates and 153 points higher than the nation’s graduates, according to data released ... by the College Board," the MCPS said.

Winston Churchill High School’s class of 2012 did even better, earning an average score of 1836. The class of 2011 earned an average score of 1825, and the class of 2010 earned an average score of 1822, according to MCPS records.

"The average score for MCPS went up 14 points, while the scores for the state and the nation dropped slightly. Seventy-one percent of the MCPS [class] of 2012 took the SAT, which is unchanged from the previous year. In Maryland, 70 percent of public school students took the SAT and across the nation, 52 percent of students took the exam," the statement added.

The SAT, administered by the College Board, has three sections: critical reading, mathematics and writing. Each section is worth 800 points, for a total of 2,400.

"This year’s SAT results make it clear that more of our graduates are ready for college-level work and are on a trajectory for success in the future," said Shirley Brandman, president of the Montgomery County Board of Education. "We should celebrate these results while, at the same time, intensifying our commitment to prepare all students for success in the 21st century."

While Churchill and the rest of the county averaged a score above 1651, many of the county high schools individually did not meet that mark.

Fifteen of the county's 25 public high schools scored below 1650 -- a score the school system hold's as a "college readiness" benchmark, illustrated by an Examiner report.

"We continue to see steady growth in SAT performance from all students and I am very pleased that more of our students are showing they are ready for [post-secondary] opportunities," said MCPS Superintendent Joshua Starr in the release.

"While the scores are moving in the right direction, we must recognize that there are persistent gaps that must be addressed if we are going to fulfill our promise of equity and excellence," he said.

Montgomery County's public schools with the highest combined average score were Poolesville High School (1,869), Walt Whitman High School (1,863), Thomas S. Wootton High School (1,837), Winston Churchill High School (1,836) and Richard Montgomery High School (1,775), according to the MCPS statement.

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