PWCS students under perform their peers on the SAT in US, VA, Fairfax, and Loudoun Counties in just about every ethnicity.
Various officials in PWCS have asserted that the reason PWCS lags behind the US, VA, and our neighboring jurisdictions on the SAT is our diversity. PWCS just posted SAT scores for the district by ethnicity to the district web site, and we pulled those scores in an effort to verify that “defense”. We do not have SAT scores for economic groups, only for ethnic groups. The financial stability of a student’s family does play a role in their performance on tests like the SAT, and approximately 1/3 of PWC students are defined as “Economically Disadvantaged”, but we don’t have access to SAT scores for students by their families financial standing.
The data show that while PWCS’s ethnic diversity plays a role in our overall SAT scores as we do have a higher percentage of students in lower performing ethnic groups, our SAT scores in every ethnic group in virtually every subject are below those achieved by students in Fairfax, Loudoun, and below average scores in the US, and Virginia in every ethnic group except African Americans. The spreadsheet is fairly long so I’ve attached it as a pdf here 2011 SAT Scores by Ethnicity.
For Asian students, PWCS under performs in Reading, Math, and Writing when compared with averages for Asian students in the US, VA, and Fairfax. Reading scores for PWCS’s Asian students are particularly poor when compared with Asian students in the US, VA, Fairfax, and Loudoun. Asian students in PWCS do slightly out perform Asian students in Loudoun in Writing and Math.
For African American students, PWCS exceeds US and Virginia averages but lags behind Fairfax and Loudoun in Reading, Math, and Writing.
For Hispanic students, PWCS exceeds US averages but lags behind VA, Fairfax, and Loudoun in Reading, Math, and Writing.
For White students, PWCS lags behind US, VA, Fairfax, and Loudon in Reading, lags behind US, Fairfax, and Loudoun in Math and Writing, and is either tied with or below VA averages for Math and Writing.