Only 40% of NY State students are college-ready: report

By Aaron Short
 Oct. 7, 2014
The SUNY System Administration Building in Albany Photo: Shutterstock
Only two in five New York state high-school students are ready for college-level work, according to College Board test results released early Tuesday.
Of the 154,809 members of the state’s Class of 2014 who took the Scholastic Aptitude Test, only 60,611 students, or 39.2 percent, met the SAT’s benchmark for college and career readiness. And only 37.2 percent of New York’s public-school students met those goals.
SAT success was far lower among the state’s students of color. A mere 14.1 percent of black SAT takers and 19.3 percent of Latino SAT takers met College Board goals, while a College Board spokesman said participation among minorities had not measurably increased.
Overall, New York trailed the national average, in which 42.6 percent — including 39.1 percent of public-school students — made the grade.
State Education Commissioner John King said the low scores reflected the “persistence of a deeply disturbing opportunity gap that must be bridged.
“[A]ll students in New York must have greater access to the excellent teaching, solid preparation and advanced course work necessary for success,” he said.
SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher agreed there is “much work to be done” to get high-school upperclassmen prepared for college.
“SUNY ... will continue to support effective early intervention programs and measures that ensure access to challenging course work at every stage of the education pipeline ,” she said.
So far, the Class of 2014 is also scoring below last year’s graduates.
In 2014, students scored an average of 488 in reading, 502 in math and 478 in writing — with a combined score of 1,468, according to the College Board.
That’s 30 points below the Class of 2013, which scored 496 in reading, 514 in math and 488 in writing.
Students who score a 1550 out of a perfect score of 2400 on the SATs have a 65percent chance of getting a B-minus or higher grade point average in their first year of college, according to the College Board.