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Press Release

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Florida's SAT and AP Performance on the Rise
~ Record numbers of students prepare for a post secondary education ~

TALLAHASSEE – Florida saw increases in both performance and participation on the SAT this year according to information released today by the College Board. The state’s combined SAT reading and math score climbed two points to 995 in 2009, with a record 100,179 students taking the college entrance exam. The results also indicate that Florida’s Hispanic and African-American students are outperforming their national counterparts on the reading and mathematics sections of the SAT by 42 points and seven points, respectively.

“Florida’s students continue to respond to higher academic expectations by challenging themselves and making significant learning gains,” said Governor Charlie Crist. “In this way, our schools and teachers are ensuring a strong learning environment for all Florida students.”

Florida’s participation on the SAT continues to outpace the nation with 58 percent of its graduates having taken the test compared to 46 percent nationally. Minority student participation also continues to be high, representing 48 percent of all test takers, compared to 40 percent for the nation.

“This year’s SAT and AP results are simply outstanding and I couldn’t be more pleased with the hard work of our teachers and school administrators who are working overtime to increase the college preparedness of our children,” said Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith. “With record numbers of students taking college entrance exams and higher level coursework, it’s clear that Florida is on the right track to ensuring a successful and highly trained workforce.”

The SAT consists of three major exam sections including reading, mathematics, and writing. Each section receives a score on the scale of 200–800. For individual exam sections, Florida’s average score was up one point in reading (497), up one point in mathematics (498) and down one point in writing (480) compared to 2008.

Florida’s AP Participation and Performance

The College Board also released Advanced Placement (AP) results, and for the fourth year in a row, Florida had the greatest one-year increase in the number of public school AP exam-takers when compared to all other states. In addition to large increases in the number of test takers, the state also experienced a 13.7 percent increase in the number of AP exams being scored 3-5 compared to a 9.4 percent increase for the nation.

Minority student participation is a primary reason for the state’s growing AP success. According to the College Board, Florida continues to have the greatest number of African-American AP test takers and the greatest number of AP exams scored 3-5 when compared to all other states. Florida also ranks third among all states in the number of Hispanic AP test takers and the number of test takers scoring a 3-5.

For more details on Florida’s performance on the SAT and AP, visit www.fldoe.org/evaluation.