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State SAT scores ahead of U.S. average

SALEM - Oregon students continued to exceed the national average on their SAT scores last year in mathematics, reading and writing, and Lake Oswego School District's scores are some of the best in the state.

At Lake Oswego High School, students averaged 573 in math, 564 in critical reading and 553 in writing. Lakeridge averaged 563 in math, 554 in critical reading and 549 in writing.

Oregon SAT takers average 527 in math, 523 in critical reading and 502 in writing; nationally, scores averaged 515 in math, 502 in critical reading and 494 in writing.

At Lake Oswego High School, 86 percent of graduating seniors take the SAT, while 72 percent take the SAT at Lakeridge. Numbers of students taking the ACT is also increasing (see sidebar), said Steve Sherrell, interim director of secondary programs.

State Schools Superintendent Susan Castillo pointed out that Oregon's SAT results again emphasize the value of a 'core curriculum,' which includes four years of English, and three years each of mathematics, science, and social sciences.

SAT test-takers who pursued a challenging course of study in high school outscored those students who did not by nearly 40 points on each portion of the test - critical reading, mathematics, and writing.

'Oregon's new graduation requirements ensure that our state will better prepare all students for success after high school,' Castillo said. 'Beginning with the class of 2010, all graduates will be required to take a core curriculum in English, math, science and social sciences. The SAT shows us that mastering a core curriculum means that students will be better prepared for college and the workforce. I believe the state will see an increase in SAT scores for all students in future years because of our new diploma requirements.'

In Oregon, 18,377 students took the SAT test in 2008.

SAT scores for individual schools are reported as part of the school report cards, released by the Oregon Department of Education on Oct. 7.