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DoDEA Announces 2007 SAT Results

For Immediate Release — September 12, 2007 | HQ
: DoDEA Educational Communications Officer | (703) 588-3260
: DoDEA Educational Communications Officer | (703) 588-3265

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA — September 12, 2007 — Students in Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) schools scored similarly to their counterparts throughout the United States on their 2007 SAT exams, according to figures released today by Dr. Joe Tafoya, DoDEA Director.

The DoDEA 2007 results reflected the decreases experienced by students in the class of 2007 throughout the Nation. This year, DoDEA students' average score in critical reading was 512, down 3 points from 2006. The 2007 average score for DoDEA students in math was 501, down 11 points from 2006. From 2005 to 2006, DoDEA's scores in math increased by 7 points. In 2007 the scores decreased by 11 points, resulting in a net loss of 4 points from 2005 to 2007. DoDEA students scored 495 in writing for 2007, down 7 points from 2006.

Nationally in SAT results recently released by the College Board, the average score in critical reading for 2007 was 502, a 1 point decline from 2006. Math and writing scores for the nation declined 3 points each compared to a year ago, bringing the scores to 515 and 494, respectively.

As a result of these decreases, DoDEA leaders are reviewing various initiatives and support programs, especially in the area of math, and will determine the next steps for the organization to ensure steady academic progress in all areas for students throughout the system.

"This year's SAT results present us with a challenge and an opportunity," Tafoya said. "Our challenge will be to improve test results across the board for next year, and this challenge gives us an opportunity to critically examine our curriculum and teaching methods to ensure students next year and every year have every resource available to them to enhance their performance on the SAT exams."

Dr. Shirley Miles, DoDEA's new Associate Director for Education and Principal Deputy Director, echoed Tafoya's sentiments.

"Our mission is to ensure the highest student achievement for all of our students," said Miles. "My priority in the area of SAT exams is to make sure our education programs give our students the best foundation to achieve their full potential not only on the exam, but in every aspect of their lives, and this is extremely critical in the secondary education years."

Several DoDEA students earned perfect scores of 800 on one of the three subject area tests. Eleven students scored a perfect 800 on the critical reading test; five students scored a perfect 800 on the math test, and four students scored a perfect 800 on the writing test.

Critical reading, math, and writing results for the DoDEA system, its areas (Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS) and Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS)) and the nation are reported in the table below:

2003-2007 SAT Results DoDEA, DDESS & Cuba, DoDDS & Guam, and the Nation
SAT 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
DoDEA Critical Reading 509 506 514 515 512
DDESS & Cuba Critical Reading 499 496 493 495 478
DoDDS & Guam Critical Reading 510 508 516 518 515
Nation Critical Reading 507 508 508 503 502
DoDEA Math 498 503 505 512 501
DDESS & Cuba Math 481 483 474 489 472
DoDDS & Guam Math 500 506 508 515 503
Nation Math 519 518 520 518 515
DoDEA Writing - - - 502 495
DDESS & Cuba Writing - - - 483 464
DoDDS & Guam Writing - - - 505 498
Nation Writing - - - 497 494

As in the past several years, the DoDEA overall participation rate in the SAT exams remained substantially higher than the nation's participation rate. For 2007, DoDEA's SAT participation rate was 65%, reflecting no change from 2006. Nationally, the SAT participation rate was 48%. Participation rates for DoDEA, DDESS, DoDDS and the nation are reported in the table below:

2003-2007 SAT Participation Rates

DoDEA, DDESS/DoDDS-Cuba, DoDDS/DDESS-Guam, and the Nation

SAT Participation 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
DoDEA 68% 65% 67% 65% 65%
DDESS & Cuba 40%* 45%* 38%* 43%* 43%*
DoDDS & Guam 74% 69% 72% 70% 69%
Nation 48% 48% 49% 48% 48%

* Because ACT is the primary college entrance exam for Ft. Campbell and Ft. Knox students, the DDESS participation rate for the SAT is normally lower than the rate for DoDDS.

DoDEA's minority students continued to achieve higher results than their counterparts across the nation. On the 2007 SAT exams, African-American students scored 30 points higher than their peers in the nation on the critical reading test; 19 points higher in math; and 30 points higher in writing. While the nation's African-American students' scores have remained static or declined from 2006 to 2007, African-American students in DoDEA have made gains in all three subject areas tested.

2003-2007 SAT Results for African-American Students
African-American 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
DoDEA Critical Reading 462 470 456 458 463
Nation Critical Reading 431 430 433 434 433
DoDEA Math 447 452 448 445 448
Nation Math 426 427 431 429 429
DoDEA Writing - - - 447 455
Nation Writing - - - 428 425

Although DoDEA Hispanic students earned scores in 2007 that were lower than in 2006, the students continued to outperform their counterparts across the country by 13 points on the critical reading test; 6 points on the math test; and 12 points on the writing test.

2003-2007 SAT Results for Hispanic Students
HISPANIC 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
DoDEA Critical Reading 475 474 479 487 471
Nation Critical Reading 452 456 458 456 458
DoDEA Math 458 464 473 476 469
Nation Math 459 460 465 463 463
DoDEA Writing - - - 475 462
Nation Writing - - - 451 450

The SAT Reasoning Test is a three-hour and 45 minute test that is a measure of the critical thinking skills related to successful performance in college. The 2006 and 2007 SAT scores reflect recent changes to the SAT which now includes three subject sections instead of two. The College Board changed the Critical Reading section by removing the section on analogies and by adding short reading passages to existing long reading passages. The Math section was changed by removing quantitative comparisons and by adding topics from third-year college preparatory math. The writing section was new in 2006. SAT scores range from 200 (lowest) to 800 (highest), with the 2007 national average score of 502 for the Critical Reading test, 515 for the Math test and 494 for the Writing test. The SAT Reasoning Test is intended to supplement the secondary school record and other information about the student, in assessing readiness for college-level work.

DoDEA plans, directs, coordinates, and manages the education programs for Department of Defense (DoD) dependents who would otherwise not have access to a high-quality public education. DoDEA consists of the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS) located overseas, and the Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS) located in the United States and its territories and possessions. DoDEA provides education to eligible DoD military and civilian dependents from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade.

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The DoDEA Communications Office initiates and manages DoDEA's communications and outreach efforts worldwide. The office coordinates press relations, internal information programs and communication with students, parents, teachers, school administrators and the public.

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