Both county and city schools can boast beating state and national average SAT scores after the Georgia Department of Education released the scores by district and school on Tuesday.

As a system, Floyd County Schools had an average score of 1064, with Rome High School scoring 1069 on average, which beat the state average of 1048 and the national average of 1039.

However, neither met the state senior participation rate of 67%, which is not concerning to those who say the SAT is no longer the only or best avenue to a secondary education.

John Parker, assistant superintendent and chief academic officer, said students can opt to not take the SAT for a variety of reasons: whether it be cost, taking a different test like the ACT or attending a college that doesn’t require a standardized test for entrance.

The FCS Class of 2019 actually had more of it seniors take the ACT than the SAT, Parker said, which is about the norm. About 23% of seniors took the SAT, state data indicates while 70% of county seniors took the ACT according to Parker.

Through a release, superintendent for Rome City Schools Lou Byars said Rome High’s SAT senior participation rate of 50% was double what it was last year.

“The participation also went up in each demographic area as well,” he said. “I am very proud of the scores achieved by our students and hope that they continue along this path to success.”

Superintendent for Floyd County Schools Jeff Wilson had similar comments about the high scores in a release from the county school system.

“One year’s scores are important, but looking at our results, consistency is very evident as our students have regularly performed at a high level above the state and national averages over a seven-year period,” he said.

SAT scores for students at Darlington School were also above the local, state and national averages. Darlington students posted a total mean score of 1175, beating out both state and national averages by a wide margin. The SAT was taken by 116 of Darlington's 124 seniors.

The GADOE said in a release that this is the second year in a row Georgia students outperformed the national average with this year’s score of 1048 being nine points higher than the national mean.

Georgia’s 2019 scores also brought positive news in the area of equity, the release stated.

Black students in Georgia’s public-school class of 2019 recorded a mean composite score of 952, well above the national mean of 921, even as their participation increased by 1.7%.

Georgia’s Hispanic or Latino students recorded a mean composite score of 1016, well over the national mean of 967, with a 16.3% increase in participation.

Two years ago, the 2017 SAT results set a new baseline for year-to-year comparisons. Reports prior to 2017 were based on the old SAT, which had a different score scale and different benchmarks.

The 2017, 2018 and 2019 SAT scores are comparable. Comparisons to 2016 or earlier are not valid.

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