Student scores show modest improvement

REPORTER FILE PHOTO | Results show encouraging results on tests for Shelter Island students, but it’s early days, according to Superintendent Michael Hynes.

Shelter Island students showed modest improvements on Advanced Placement tests administered by the College Board, an international organization that offers AP and Scholastic Aptitude Test programs to help prepare students for college.

Scores released for the 2011-12 school term showed an increase in the number of Shelter Island students taking AP courses — 18 last year as compared with 11 the previous year. There were six students scoring at level 3 or above, who are eligible to earn credits at SUNY colleges for their performances in advanced placement courses.

The previous year, four of the 11 students who took the tests scored at level 3 or above. Other colleges offer credit to students who score at level four or five. But there was no breakdown of Shelter Island scores to indicate how many students scored at those upper levels, qualifying them for college credits at the other schools.

“I’m slightly encouraged by what I see,” Superintendent Michael Hynes said about the 2011-12 scores. But given data for only two years, he said he can’t put a lot of “credence” in their meaning. It would take improving scores over a five-year period to predict a positive trend, Dr. Hynes said.

He and academic administrator Jennifer Rylott are working on curriculum changes they anticipate will result in improvements for students at all levels to better prepare Shelter Island graduates for whatever challenges they face, whether going on to college or pursuing jobs.