Georgia’s Class of 2020 scored strong on the SAT despite coronavirus

A school year disrupted by a global pandemic didn’t stop Georgia students from beating the national average on their SAT scores. While scores were slightly lower than 2019 both statewide and nationally, Georgia students still stayed ahead of national trends.

According to the Georgia Department of Education, for the third year in a row, Georgia public-school students outperformed their counterparts in the nation’s public schools on the SAT, recording a mean score of 1043, thirteen points higher than the mean for U.S. public schools.

The class of 2020 has faced unprecedented adversity and uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “Given all they have overcome, I am so proud of these students for becoming the third graduating class in Georgia history to beat the national average on the SAT. I continue to be optimistic about the future of Georgia public schools as our students, teachers, and schools continue to surpass expectations and outperform their peers nationally.”


Georgia outperformed the nation’s public schools by 12 points in Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and by one point in math.

 ERWMathComposite
Georgia Public Schools 20205325111043
U.S. Public Schools 20205205101030

The state’s public school students did experience slight decreases in scores, which mirrored similar decreases nationally. Overall, Georgia saw a five-point decrease in composite score while the nation saw a nine-point decrease.

 ERWMathComposite
Georgia Public Schools 20205325111043
Georgia Public Schools 20195335151048
    
U.S. Public Schools 20205205101030
U.S. Public Schools 20195245151039

Sixty-four percent of public-school graduates in the class of 2020 took the SAT during high school, a slight decrease from the 67 percent of class of 2019 students who took the SAT.

Georgia’s 2020 scores also brought positive news in the area of equity.

Black students in Georgia’s public school-class of 2020 recorded a mean composite score of 946, well above the national mean of 914. Georgia’s Hispanic or Latino students recorded a mean composite score of 1010, compared to the national mean of 958.

Three years ago, the 2017 SAT results set a new baseline for year-to-year comparisons. Reports prior to 2017 were based on the old SAT, which had a different score scale and different benchmarks. The 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 SAT scores are comparable. Comparisons to 2016 or earlier are not valid.



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