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Marietta Outpaces State, Metro Scores on Georgia High School Writing Test

Marietta City Schools (MCS) 11th grade test scores (239) on the Georgia High School Writing Test (GHSWT) outpaced both the Georgia average (226) and the Metro Atlanta scores (229).

Marietta City Schools (MCS) 11th grade test scores (239) on the Georgia High School Writing Test (GHSWT) outpaced both the Georgia average (226) and the Metro Atlanta scores (229).

In 2012, ninety-eight percent of students tested, either met or exceeded standards, surpassing both the state (95 percent) and the Metro Atlanta average (96 percent).

African-American, White, and Hispanic students surpassed the state’s subgroup performance with 98 percent of African-American, 99 percent of White, and 100 percent of Hispanic students passing. MCS students also scored higher than their peers did in all four domains of effective writing: Ideas (3.6), Organization (3.7), Style (3.7) and Convention (3.5).

“This year, our eleventh graders significantly exceeded standards outpacing both Metro Atlanta and Georgia,” said Emily Lembeck, MCS Superintendent. “Our continued focus on developing writing skills necessary at every level of schooling and for effective business and social communication is clearly evidenced by our student’s performance on this year’s test.”

Eleventh graders participate in the GHSWT and must pass the test to earn a regular education diploma. A mean scaled score of 200 is defined as “meets expectations,” and 250 as “exceeds expectations” with scale scores ranging from 100 to 350.

The test is scored analytically, meaning each paper is scored holistically by domains. Using fixed scoring criteria established in the Scoring Rubrics, two trained readers score each paper independently by rating on four domains of effective writing.

MCS 11th graders scored higher than their peers did statewide in all four domains of effective writing or broad themes (Ideas, Organization, Style and Convention), covered by the GHSWT. Test scores in this portion of the test are ranked on a scale of 1 to 5, where one is the lowest and five is the highest.

  • The Ideas domain measures the degree to which the writer establishes a controlling idea and elaborates the main points with examples, illustrations, facts or details.
  • In the Organization domain, a student’s ability to arrange ideas in a clear order consistent with the persuasive genre is assessed.
  • Style domain points are awarded based on the writer’s ability to control language and engage the reader.
  • The Conventions domain measures the degree to which the writer demonstrates control of sentence formation, usage, and mechanics.

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