CCSD students excel at college entrance exam
by Michelle Babcock
August 27, 2014 12:30 AM | 2639 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Cherokee County School District Class of 2014 outscored both state and national averages on the ACT, a popular college entrance and placement exam taken by many seniors.

Cherokee County students scored an average of 22.6 out of 36 possible points on the ACT exam, topping both the state average of 20.8 and the national average of 21, results show.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Frank Petruzielo commended the students for their success, and thanked teachers, parents, administrators and others for their support.

“These outstanding scores echo the message of recently released state data: When CCSD students head off to college, they are doing so with an education that prepared them for its academic challenges,” Petruzielo said, adding 88 percent of Cherokee students who graduated between 2007 and 2012 did not need any remedial classes in college.

Not only did the school district as a whole perform well, but all six high schools in the district outscored state and national averages on all subject areas on the exam.

The ACT includes sections in English, mathematics, reading and science reasoning, and each high school in the district individually out-performed state and national averages.

Etowah High School had the highest score in the district, with an average of 23.5, and Woodstock High School came in second with an average score of 23.1 points.

Etowah High School Principal Keith Ball said he’s proud of his students and staff.

“I am extremely proud of their performance, in light of so many instructional days lost due to furloughs and ‘Snow Jam,’” Ball said.

Ball said the implementation of an ACT preparation class two years ago has shown excellent results at the school, and added the class would be offered again for a third consecutive year.

“I am also pleased that Etowah continues to improve our ACT scores at the same time our enrollment and economically disadv-antaged population increases,” he added. “Great job to all of the Etowah Learning Community as everyone has a hand in student success.”

Etowah has ranked first or second in the district on the ACT for seven years in a row, figures showed.

Other school averages in the district include Cherokee High School at 21.5 points; Creekview High School at 22.5 points; River Ridge High School at 21.5 points; and Sequoyah High School with 22.6 points.

The average score in the Cherokee School District improved by 1.8 points over the Class of 2013’s average score of 20.8, and the number of students in the district who took the exam also increased.

About 56 percent of seniors in the Class of 2014 took the ACT exam, or 1,377 students, compared to 1,283 students in the previous year, or about 51 percent, data shows.

Petruzielo said the Class of 2014 excelled despite current challenges.

“The Class of 2014 excelled in mastering the knowledge tested by the ACT despite the challenges of larger class sizes resulting from state ‘austerity budget cuts’ and a slowly recovering local tax digest,” he said.

Petruzielo said all district principals will be reviewing the ACT scores to determine how scores can be further improved.

“We are dedicated to the progress of every student to ensure they each master the knowledge and skills needed to succeed after graduation, as they pursue higher education and as they begin their careers,” Petruzielo said.

This school year, the ACT will be administered Sept. 13, Oct. 25, Dec. 13, Feb. 7, April 18 and June 13, and counselors are available to help students with registration and online preparation materials, he said.

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