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Seniors demonstrate college readiness

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The results of the PSAT and ACT assessments administered last spring have been released by the Colorado Department of Education. As 50J administrators analyze those results, they're also preparing high school juniors and seniors to transition to the SAT exam. Both the ACT and SAT are accepted by colleges and universities, but the Colorado Department of Education determined the SAT is more closely aligned with the Colorado Academic Standards.

Kurt Clay, assistant superintendent, explains while last year's seniors took the ACT, the PSAT was administered to sophomores and SATs to juniors. Next spring, the PSAT/SAT will be fully implemented statewide.

On the ACT last year, test scores for both Cedaredge and Delta students were higher than in recent years. Paonia High School dropped a bit, but still kept pace with the state average. Hotchkiss High School was just under the state average.

"We attribute a lot of our student success to the Advanced Placement (AP) program and the rigor we're offering to kids," Clay said.

The results of the Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) assessments administered in elementary, middle and high schools last spring were also released.

Students in grades 5, 8, and 11 took the science assessments. The social studies assessment was administered in grades 4 and 7 on a sampling basis to one-third of the state's schools.

Across the county, results were very close to last year's, Clay said.

Math and language arts assessments are scheduled to be released in a few weeks. The school district has already seen a preview of PARCC results, which Clay says are pretty exciting. "Overall, it was a very good year for us."

At the urging of parents, educators and state legislators, the amount of time devoted to testing has been reduced. Juniors and seniors will take only the SAT, and CDE cut close to three hours off PARCC tests for each student.

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