Although the SAT scores released Tuesday by the district show senior
performance dipping on the verbal portion of the test, math scores
"It's not a catastrophic picture, but we are worried about some of the
scores. Over the years we have seen a steady rising trend," said Caroline
Brumm, district coordinator of student and program evaluation.
District Superintendent David Aponik said the scores showed that
Burbank students need to improve.
"I'm disappointed by the scores. The scores are OK, but they show we
have a lot of work ahead of us," Aponik said.
About 1.26-million high school seniors throughout the country took the
SAT exam this year. In Burbank, 323 seniors from Burbank and John
Burroughs high schools took the exam.
The SAT is given by the College Board and is required by most
four-year colleges. The maximum score on the SAT is 1600, 800 for each
section of the test.
THE SCORES Average verbal scores for both high schools were lower
than the state average of 497 and national average of 505, Brumm said.
At Burbank High, the verbal score of 485 remained the same from the
previous year and two points below the 1998 average.
Burroughs' average verbal score dropped 10 points this year to 487. In
1998, the average verbal score was 479.
The contrast between Burroughs and Burbank High's verbal scores may be
due to demographic makeup at the schools, Brumm said.
"At Burroughs you have a higher percentage of students whose primary
language is not English, who are first-generation college students,"
Brumm said. She added that income levels for the families of Burroughs
students are, on average, less than those for Burbank High families.
Burroughs principal Emilio Urioste agreed that demographics play a
role in SAT performance.
"There are a lot of students who go home and their parents can't help
them with their homework because they don't speak the language," he said.
"This is something we are looking into and working on."
Although, math scores at both high schools increased this year,
Burroughs was was still below the state average of 518 and national
average of 514.
At Burbank High, the math score increased by one point from 520 in
1999 to 521 this year.
Burroughs average math score increased seven points from 497 in 1999
to 504 in 2000. Still, the score was 14 points behind the state average
and 10 points behind the national average.