HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – While SAT scores drop in both the Palmetto State and the nation, Horry County seems to be bucking the trend, with scores rising in math and beating the state average.
"We begin preparing early on," said Horry County Schools Superintendent Dr. Cindy Elsberry. "We start by letting our students get high school credit while they're in middle school."
The average SAT score for Horry County students is 1484, just 14 points below the national average of 1498. South Carolina's average comes in at 1431.
Elsberry says Horry County Schools focus heavily on early preparation, with emphasis on the Preliminary SAT, first administered in 8th Grade. Though, some schools prepare even sooner.
"Our elementary math scores are in the 78th Percentile nationally," she said. "That prepares students early on for that SAT they'll eventually have to take."
When the scores are broken down, Horry County came in above the national average for math with a score of 516. But, students in the county came in lower on average than both the state and country for critical reading and writing sections.
Some schools, like Carolina Forest High School and North Myrtle Beach High scored above the national average with scores of 1521 and 1578, respectively.