COVINGTON -- About a third of Newton County students who retook their End of Course Tests over the summer passed.
The Newton County School System recently reported that 36 percent, or 357 of 981 students, passed retests over the summer.
Students were required to participate in a remediation course prior to the test day.
Originally, high school students took the tests in the spring in areas such as literature, various sciences, history, economics and math. EOCTs assess a sample of the knowledge and skills in a complete curriculum for each course, according to the GaDOE.
On the retest over the summer, 80 students were tested in ninth-grade literature, and 35 passed, while 55 were tested in American literature, and 29 students passed, according to NCSS.
In science, 133 students retook the biology test, and 48 of them passed, while 68 students were tested in physical science, with 25 of them passing.
In U.S. history, 107 students were tested, with 36 of them passing.
In math, which had the most retested students, 245 students retook the Math I exam, and 103 students passed; 293 students retook the Math II test, and 81 students passed, which was the lowest percentage pass rate of 28 percent.
"No doubt, mathematics is an area prime for lots of improvement in NCSS and throughout the state," said NCSS Superintendent Gary Mathews in his End-of-Month Notes recently emailed to educational stakeholders. "Yet, we are beginning to show improvement, and that's the forward momentum we must sustain. ... Thanks to teachers and other leaders for learning, we are making progress on these state assessments."
Before retests were included in the scores released by the Georgia Department of Education earlier this summer, results showed that Newton County students scored above the state in five out of eight categories -- ninth-grade literature, biology, physical science, U.S. history and economics.
With retest results, American literature would increase by 2 points, Math I would increase by 7 points and Math II by 6 points, according to NCSS. The state has yet to release its final figures.
Additionally, the NCSS said students improved on seven of eight tests, compared to last school year, according to preliminary results. With the retest results, the same would remain true, according to NCSS.
"While we're not where we want to be, we aren't where we were," Mathews said.
Beginning this school year, EOCTs will be used as a factor of high school success for accountability purposes on the new College and Career Ready Performance Index, according to the GaDOE. Additionally, EOCTs increasingly will be factored more into students' course grades and graduation requirements, in addition to the GHSGTs, over the next several years.