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City’s 2011 AP and SAT scores show little improvement overall

More city students than ever took exams that could earn them college credit last year. But the pass rate held steady at just over 50 percent.

The number of city high school students taking rigorous Advanced Placement exams last year jumped by 6.9 percent, according to Department of Education data released today. That follows a push by the DOE to expand access to college-level coursework to more students. The number of students passing the exams also rose by 7 percent, meaning that students’ overall performance didn’t improve.

Black students, who have lagged the most in both participation and performance on AP exams, did post higher scores, with 12.7 percent more passing tests than last year.

The DOE also released information about how New York City students did last year on the SAT. Nationally, performance dropped as the number of test-takers rose. But here in New York, 10 percent more high school seniors took the SAT, but students’ scores overall held flat or dropped by one point on the test’s three different sections.

Still, city students’ average SAT score is well below the national average. This year, NYC students scored an average total score of 1,327, while the national average is 1,483.

Both SAT and AP exam participation and performance will be factored into the college-readiness metric that the DOE will premiere on high schools’ forthcoming progress reports.