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College, career readiness data show some Ga. students unprepared

ATLANTA — Only about two-thirds of Georgia’s high schoolers have mastered core subjects at a level that would allow them to move on to the next grade, new data released this week by the Georgia Department of Education (DOE) shows.  

The latest College and Career Ready Performance Index reports provide overviews of how students are performing across the state. The content mastery score covers English, math, social studies, and science. This year’s high school score of 64.7 is down from 2019’s score of 70, when the last full set of data was collected.  

But in “readiness,” which includes topics like literacy and computer science, things have remained stable. This year’s high school students earned 73.2, down just a little over a point from 2019’s score of 74.5. The new data also includes information on elementary and middle school performance.  

The results from 2019 are not directly comparable to this year’s results because of pandemic-related changes to the reporting process.  

States must collect this data under federal education law so schools can be evaluated and held accountable. Georgia also uses the data to determine which schools need special attention and support.  Data for each school and district are on the College and Career Ready Performance Index website.

This year, the DOE applied for and received federal permission for exceptions in how it reports the data because of the COVID pandemic. As a result of the reporting modifications, the DOE did not assign overall letter or number grades to each school and district as it usually does. 

Going forward, DOE will use 2022 data as a baseline for evaluating school improvement. 

State School Superintendent Richard Woods, a Republican who was re-elected to his third term in the office last week, acknowledged the pandemic has taken a toll on Georgia’s students.  

“Georgia will continue to remain laser-focused on academic recovery,” Woods said. “We know the pandemic had an undeniable impact on student learning – it’s our role, responsibility, and privilege moving forward to ensure districts and schools have the resources they need to continue investing in students and combating the effects of lost learning opportunities.”

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