County kids improve ACT testing scores

COUNTY — Pickens County high school seniors excelled in their ACT testing in 2012, scoring above both state and national averages.

Local students earned an average score of 23.1, compared to the South Carolina public school average of 19.9, and the national average of 21.1. SDPC trailed only the Governor’s Schools and was tied with York 4 for the second-highest average composite score of any public school district in the state.

The district improved from 2011, when students earned an average score of 22.6.

“I am very proud of our district’s ACT results,” superintendent Dr. Kelly Pew said. “They demonstrate the academic rigor our teachers are providing our students. ACT is one factor that determines the success of a student in postsecondary education. Being one of the top public school districts is certainly something we are proud of.”

Daniel High School students had an average composite score of 24.2, followed by Pickens High School with 22.9, Easley High School with 22.8 and Liberty High School with 22.0.

The only public schools in the state in which the students earned a higher composite score than Daniel High School were the Governor’s Schools and Academic Magnet High School in Charleston, all of which require applications for student admission.

SDPC students outperformed state and national averages in every subject. Each high school also outperformed state and national averages in almost every subject. The only exception was math among Liberty High School students, on which they averaged a score that was 0.4 points lower than the national average.

“I am extremely proud of our high schools,” assistant superintendent of instructional services Sharon Huff said. “These results on the ACT are good indicators that SDPC students are ready to face the academic challenges of college.

“Our high schools encourage students to take rigorous college-preparatory classes, and the teachers have high expectations for students. We are especially pleased with our district’s results compared to other districts around the state. It is a positive affirmation of a job well done by our high schools.”