Keystone Oaks School District News Article

KO isn’t sitting out on the SAT

In an official list by the Pittsburgh Business Insider, Keystone Oaks scored in the top twenty for highest SAT scores of all high schools in the Pittsburgh region.
This is impressive not only because of the number 18 rank, but also because KO is the most top-rated smaller school, regarding SAT scores. Principal, Dr. Harbauer gives credit to not only the outstanding high school staff, but to previous elementary and middle school educators for laying the foundation for future success.
“In regards to the core subjects, we have developed Professional Learning Communities, which are groups of teachers across disciplines who team up to review data such as test scores, grades, attendance, and look for trends to find our strengths and weaknesses from the results. We then start to implement strategies that will enhance our instruction, which ultimately improves student achievement.”
These advancements have obviously abetted in the improvement of SAT scores, but less recognizable positive changes have also occurred.
Hartbauer stated, “For example, the way we revamped our biology review classes this past fall, based on the findings of the PLCs, helped to facilitate the highest percentage of test re-takers to pass the Keystone Exam yet. These results also showed in our English and Math scores, as well.”
Despite the obstacles that many smaller schools face, including less varied elective options and smaller staff sizes, KO has prospered, and is aligned alongside many prestigious institutions.
This upcoming year has seen a rising trend of students signing up to enroll in the SAT prep courses offered at the school during the day.
Hartbauer claimed that, “One thing we are doing differently in this upcoming year is having students complete one half of the SAT course with a math teacher, and the other semester with an english teacher, so each class receives a composite of the exam.”
Along with the alterations in the SAT prep, the school district as a whole has increased the precision of the course contents, and further accelerated our curriculum to the national standards.
These steps taken by every figure within our school have helped not only the students themselves, but the community as a whole to maintain a more positive perception of KO.
“I feel very confident that we are making constructive strides. Our score on the School Performance Profile rating has jumped up over two points this past year, and the reason for that is a combination of better scores on SAT/ACT, AP, and Keystone exams. A lot of the assessments that determine our end results are receiving better scores because of the enhancements in our instruction, curriculum, and evaluations,” stated Hartbauer.

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