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Columbia Public Schools

Dr. Chris Belcher Superintendent

1818 West Worley Street Columbia, Missouri 65203 (573) 214-3400 (573) 214-3401 Fax www.columbia.k12.mo.us

News For Immediate Release


Date: Contact: Phone: Fax: August 17, 2011 Michelle Baumstark (573) 214-3960 (573) 214-3401 or Dr. Chris Belcher (573) 214-3410

Columbia Students Outscore State, National Peers on AP and ACT Exams


Columbia, MO Columbia Public Schools students fared well on Advanced Placement (AP) and ACT exams administered in 2011, outscoring their state, national and global peers. Eighty-five percent of Columbia Public School students 2011 AP exam scores met the level required by many colleges and universities (three and above) to earn college credit. Exams are scored on a scale of one to five. Additionally, a higher percentage of students scored a five on the exam, 29.4 percent compared to 22 percent in 2008-09. Below is a chart summarizing the score comparisons across school district, state and global AP testtakers for Columbias most frequently taken AP exams.
Participation Numbers and Average Scores for CPS Most Frequently Administered AP Exams, 2011 AP Exam Number of CPS Students Participating 230 216 151 95 136 102 75 65 CPS Test Takers Average Score 3.59 4.22 3.30 3.78 3.49 3.70 3.84 3.83 Missouri Test Takers Average Score 3.12 (3725) 3.50 (2305) 2.91 (3261) 3.14 (2021) 2.82 (1866) 2.89 (3353) 3.17 (1083) 2.81 (1434) Global Test Takers Average Score 2.92 (412467) 3.12 (197719) 2.75 (406089) 2.82 (255366) 2.57 (188428) 2.81 (367964) 2.82 (142911) 2.70 (184500)

English Language & Composition Psychology US History Calculus AB World History English Literature & Composition Statistics Biology

Data source: College Board, August 2011

The percent of CPS students taking at least one AP exam has remained between 16 and 19 percent over the last three years, compared to an estimated eight to nine percent at the state level. In 2011, 731 students took AP exams, compared to 704 test takers in 2010. Students from all three high school grade levels (10, 11 and 12) have taken the exams. Additionally, 82.8 percent of students enrolled in an AP course took at least one AP exam in 2011.

Students are encouraged to challenge themselves with rigorous coursework and take advantage of the opportunity to earn college credit, said Superintendent Chris Belcher. Students taking AP exams have the opportunity to earn college credit or advanced standing at most of the nation's colleges and universities. Similar to AP exam scores, students continue to achieve ACT test scores above the state and national averages. The recently released ACT Profile Report, which summarizes the performance of ACT test-takers in the Class of 2011, indicates that Columbia students' average composite score is 23.8, compared to 21.6 for Missouri test-takers and 21.1 for test-takers across the nation. The 2011 report indicates an increase in the composite score from 2010. The average composite score increased from 23.3 in 2010 to 23.8 in 2011. The scores in each assessed area also increased. The number of test takers continues to increase steadily. In 2003, 788 students took the test compared to 883 in 2011. Additionally, the percent of the graduating class taking the ACT exam is on the rise. In 2011, 73.7 percent of the graduating class took the exam compared to 70.7 percent in 2010 and 70.2 percent in 2009. The ACT is America's most widely accepted college entrance exam, with scores ranging from 1 to 36. It assesses high school students' general educational development and their ability to complete college-level work. The multiple-choice tests cover four skill areas: English, mathematics, reading, and science. Below are charts displaying score comparisons across Columbia Public Schools, the state and the nation as well as score trends since 2003.

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