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Barrow scores higher than state on CRCT

WINDER - Barrow County students bested the state average in tests that third-, fifth- and eighth-graders are required to pass before being promoted to the next level.

Georgia's Criterion-Referenced Competency Test, or CRCT, requires third-grade students meet or exceed reading standards to be promoted, while both reading and math scores must be considered for fifth- and eighth-graders.

Barrow County Schools released their results Friday, but did not break them down into various subgroups. Phone calls seeking more information about the scores were not returned as of press time Friday.

At the state level, 83 percent of third-graders passed the reading portion of the test, while 84.6 percent of students in Barrow met or exceeded the standards. In fifth grade, 81 percent of students across the state passed the reading portion and 89 percent passed math, while those numbers were 87.4 percent passing in reading and 91.7 percent passing in math in the county.

Eighth-grade students across the state passed the reading test 89 percent of the time, as compared to 90.7 percent of the time in Barrow, and the math test had a 77 percent passing rate in the state and 78.1 percent in the county.

Students who did not pass the exam must retake it before continuing on to the next grade level.

The state Department of Education put 19 new CRCTs in place this year as part of a plan to create a more difficult curriculum. For that reason, many test results cannot be compared to previous years' scores.

The tests are given to Georgia students in grades one through eight. Students in each grade take the CRCT in reading, English/language arts and math. Students in grades three through eight take additional tests in science and social studies.

The lowest grades for the system were on the sixth-grade math test, where just 61.9 percent of students met or exceeded standards. Sixth- and seventh-grade science rates were also low, with 68 percent of sixth-graders and 69.5 percent of seventh-graders passing the test. The math results mirrored state averages, and Barrow students performed better than the state in science, with local science scores seven points higher than the state for sixth-graders and six and a half points higher for seventh-graders.