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South Carolina Department of Education announces 2015-16 testing data for Darlington County School District

on Friday, 23 September 2016. Posted in News, Education, Local News

South Carolina Department of Education announces 2015-16 testing data for Darlington County School District
HHS Harper Smith - Hartsville High School senior Harper Smith gathers for a photo with HHS Career Specialist Sara Orlowski with a National Career Readiness Certificate. Smith became the first Darlington County School District student and one of only about 100 11th grade students statewide last year to attain Platinum certification on the ACT WorkKeys test. Just .2 percent of more than 50,000 South Carolina juniors achieved platinum status.

DARLINGTON, S.C. – This week, the S.C. Department of Education released results for several statewide tests for the 2015-16 school year, including ACT WorkKeys, ACT, International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme assessments, and the South Carolina Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (SCPASS).

Harper Smith, now a senior at HHS, earned a Platinum level score on the ACT WorkKeys test. The first student in DCSD to do so, she is one of only about 100 out of more than 50,000 juniors tested in South Carolina last year to score high enough for Platinum certification.

The ACT WorkKeys test measures a student’s readiness to enter the workforce following graduation. In order to attain Platinum certification, a student must score at least a Level 6 on each of the three assessments – applied mathematics, locating information and reading for information. Just .2 percent of South Carolina juniors who took the test last year scored so well.

“Harper Smith's accomplishment by achieving a Platinum level score on the ACT WorkKeys assessment is no small feat, and we are proud of that accomplishment,” said Dr. Eddie Ingram, DCSD superintendent. “I believe we can and will grow that number over time."

In DCSD, 85 percent of juniors tested high enough on the WorkKeys test to earn a National Career Readiness Certificate. That is on par with 86.8 percent of juniors across the state to earn a certificate.

“We’re excited that Harper Smith has achieved Platinum status on WorkKeys,” said Dr. Charlie Burry, HHS principal. “She is a great example of the fulfillment of our mission at Hartsville High School: ‘Preparing for the Future By Learning Every Day.’ We’re proud of Harper and her teachers, and we know that she has more great things ahead of her.”

For the second year, all juniors in DCSD and South Carolina took the ACT. DCSD juniors’ average score was a 17.3, third highest of the 11 Pee Dee districts. That compares to the 18.2 state average for juniors last year.

District-level data for 2016 graduating seniors’ scores on the ACT recently became available. DCSD seniors averaged a 17.9 on the ACT, which is the highest average in the Pee Dee. That compares to the state’s public school district average of 18.2.

Hartsville High School’s IB Programme continued its success in 2015-16.  Fifteen IB diplomas were awarded out of a possible 17. That success rate of 88 percent compares to the state average of 62 percent.

Eighty-five HHS IB students took 221 subject area tests, scoring four or higher 76 percent of the time. That compares to the state average of 68 percent. Also, 30 HHS IB students took 47 Theory of Knowledge and Extended Essay tests, scoring an “A,” “B,” or “C” at a rate of 70 percent. That compares to the 64 percent state average of applicable schools.

Students in fourth through eight grades are required to take the SCPASS, unless they qualify to take the S.C. Alternative Assessment. SCPASS measures student performance on the South Carolina Academic Standards in science and social studies. Student scores translate into one of three categories: not met, met or exemplary. DCSD students scored higher than state averages in seven of 10 areas, indicated by an asterisk below.

SCPASS (Percentage of students who scored “met” or “exemplary”)


Science                                     DCSD                                                        South Carolina                                                       

Fourth grade                          65.3 percent*                                          65.0 percent                                            

Fifth grade                              60.6 percent                                            65.7 percent                                            

Sixth grade                             56.8 percent                                            62.1 percent                                            

Seventh grade                       71.2 percent*                                          70.6 percent                                            

Eighth grade                          71.0 percent*                                          66.2 percent        

Social studies                       DCSD                                                         South Carolina                   

Fourth grade                          82.9 percent*                                          81.3 percent                                            

Fifth grade                              65.7 percent                                            71.5 percent                                            

Sixth grade                             80.5 percent*                                          76.3 percent                                            

Seventh grade                       69.5 percent*                                          68.4 percent                                            

Eighth grade                          71.1 percent*                                          69.5 percent                                            

“I am proud of the efforts our students, teachers and administrators exert in order to achieve the results we have received,” Ingram said. “There is always more work to do. So we always strive for continuous improvement.” 

More test results from the 2015-16 school year are expected to be released in the coming weeks. For more information about testing in DCSD, please contact the Office of Communications at 843-398-2284.

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22 September 2020