Greetings from the Math Department
- Mr. Burleigh’s 8th grade algebra I students were very successful on last year’s Algebra I Keystone exam. Of the forty-six (46) students who took it, 98% passed. In fact, twenty-six (26) students scored advanced, almost 60%. Nineteen (19) students scored proficient. These students worked really hard last year and should be commended both on their efforts and achievement. This year’s 8th grade algebra I class will be taking the Algebra I Keystone exam the week of May 16th.
- In addition, all 8th graders will be taking the 8th Math PSSA the week of April 18th. We expect our class of students to do well as they are working hard and off to a great start. With regards to high-stakes standardized exams, the Scholastic Aptitude Exam, or SAT, is in a transition this school year. Some of our students will be taking the old exam on Saturday, November 7th, 2015. In addition, we will have some students re-taking the exam on Saturday, June 4th, 2016. The 2016 exam will be the new version of the SAT.
- The exam will have lots of changes. The current SAT “math section samples content from a wide range of high-level math. There are often only one or two questions on each topic and students need to cover a great deal of math to be prepared for all topics.” The redesigned “math section draws from fewer topics that evidence shows most contribute to student readiness for college and career training. Students can study these core math areas in depth and have confidence that they will be assessed.”
- With regards to calculators. Currently, “calculator permitted for full math section. It is difficult to assess students’ sense of numbers, their fluency in calculation, and their ability to understand concepts rather than plug in the answers.” The new SAT has a different calculator policy. For the redesigned SAT, “calculator permitted on certain portions of the math section. The calculator can be used where most appropriate, but the no-calculator section allows greater assessment of students’ understanding, fluency, and technique.”
- The new SAT will be scored differently. Currently, “scoring deducts points for incorrect answers. Students get ¼ point deducted for incorrect answers; no points deducted for omitted answers.” In the new redesigned SAT, scoring does not deduct points for incorrect answers. Students are encouraged to select the best answer to every question.” Finally, the current SAT has a score scale of 2400. The new redesigned SAT will have a score scale of 1600 with a separate score for the essay.