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SALEM — Oregon students may not have done well at the Smarter Balanced assessments, but scored high on the SAT exams.

According to a press release from the Oregon Department of Education, Oregon students “outperformed their peers across the country.”

Oregon public school students averaged a score of 555 on reading and writing, the scale being 200 to 800. That is above the national average of 527.

Though math has been a struggling point for Oregon, especially students from Coos County, SAT scores came in around 543 which is above the national average of 517.

Yes, these scores look good, but none can be compared to previous years since the test has been changed. Though scores are coming in high, the Smarter Balanced assessment had also been changed and school district authorities pointed to those changes as a reason for low scores.

“While it is always good to see Oregon students performing well, I am most encouraged by the increased participation among student groups that have been historically underrepresented,” Oregon Deputy Superintendent Salam Noor said. “Taking a test like the SAT is often a precursor to going to college, so it’s important that all of our students have the same opportunities.”

Oregon also increased the number of students taking Advanced Placement (AP) exams this year compared to 2016, as well as the number of students scoring a three or better on a scale of one to five, according to the press release.

“The continued increase in participation and performance on the SAT and in Advanced Placement is a reflection of the investments the state has made in providing opportunities for students,” Noor said. “The increases observed in every student group are a sign that we are moving in the right direction to close opportunity gaps among our students.”

SAT and AP exam scores have not been broken down by specific districts yet. Local school districts were unavailable for comment.

Reporter Jillian Ward can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 235, or by email at Follow her on Twitter: @JE_Wardwriter.