Beaufort County School District 11th-graders who took South Carolina’s first statewide administration of the increasing popular WorkKeys test outperformed students in other districts.
Students who post qualifying scores earn “portable” certificates at the Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum levels that can be used to qualify for good-paying jobs anywhere in the nation. Increasing numbers of businesses require job applicants to have WorkKeys certificates.
Ninety percent of Beaufort County 11th-graders scored high enough during last spring’s first WorkKeys administration to earn a certificate, compared to 88 percent of 11th-graders statewide. Sixty-nine percent of Beaufort County 11th-graders earned a Silver certificate or higher, compared to 63 percent of 11th-graders statewide.
Among the district’s five high schools, Battery Creek High saw 86.2 percent of its 11th-graders score high enough to earn a certificate, along with 89.3 percent for Beaufort High, 94.3 percent for Bluffton High, 90.6 for Hilton Head Island High and 83.9 percent for Whale Branch Early College High.
WorkKeys exams comprise three 45-minute tests: Applied Mathematics, Locating Information and Reading for Information. More than 50,000 11th-graders took the test statewide, including 1,187 from the Beaufort County School District.
Beaufort County 11th-graders had higher mean scale scores on all three tests compared to average scores statewide, with the district’s statewide rankings on the three tests ranging from 13th to 16th out of 86 South Carolina school districts.