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Area private schools top state, national SAT scores

Average SAT scores at area private schools Fredericksburg Christian Schools and Fredericksburg Academy increased in 2013, topping national and state scores.

Nationally, students of public schools achieved an average score of 1,474. Statewide, the average was 1,517 for 2013.

A perfect score on the SAT is 2,400.

Fredericksburg Christian School students improved their scores to 1,635 in 2013, up from 1,559 in 2012 and 1,551 in 2011.

Spokeswoman Suzie Medina said the annual increases speak to the efficacy of recent curriculum changes, which began three years ago.

Overall scores on verbal, writing and math tests each increased as well.

The upper school on Thornton Rolling Road in Spotsylvania County also offers an SAT prep course twice a year to students, in January and September.

Fredericksburg Academy, topped the region in scores, with 1,792.

That score is higher than 2012’s 1,779 and 2011’s 1,683.

Tony Durso, head of the upper school at Fredericksburg Academy, said comprehensive curriculum is also what drives their scores higher.

He said their students are better prepared for the SAT after 12 years of focus on writing, reading and mathematics.

Each student at the school near Four-Mile Fork in Spotsylvania takes a PSAT and the practice test for the ACT, the other widely used college readiness exam.

He said after those results are tallied, the school advises the student whether they will more likely succeed on the SAT or ACT.

While most take both tests, he said a rise in the number of ACT takers has been evident in recent years.

“It’s not really about test prep here,” said director of college counseling Corey Fischer. “But really about building skills over a number of years.”

Lindley Estes: 540/735-1976