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franklin county times

Tharptown students recognized for high test scores

By Staff
Kim West
Franklin County Times
THARPTOWN – Last spring approximately 30 sixth-graders at Tharptown High School took the Stanford Achievement Test, and seven of those students scored high enough to receive recognition from a national academic talent search.
Tharptown seventh-graders Steven Cook, Fernando Garcia, Mariah Hodge, Mason Montgomery, Erica Valdez, Elizabeth Vargas and Lauren Wilkinson have been selected by the Duke University Talent Identification Program to participate in the Duke TIP 7th Grade Talent Search, which has invited them to take either the SAT or ACT exams.
The program identifies seventh-graders in 16 sates in the Southeast, Midwest and Southwest who have scored in the 95th percentile or above on a national grade-level achievement test. They will be allowed to test alongside high school students, and many of these seventh-graders will earn SAT or ACT scores that will rival or surpass those earned by college-bound juniors and seniors.
The students had different opinions on the difficulty level of the exam they took last spring. The SAT tests students in language arts, science, reading and social science.
"I don't think the test was very hard," said Garcia, whose best subject is math.
"I thought some of the test was hard, and some of it was easy," added Wilkinson, who said her best subject is science.
The students did agree on naming Derek Ergle and Melissa Cox as their favorite Tharptown teachers.
"Coach Ergle teaches seventh grade civics – he teaches stuff but he makes it interesting," said Wilkinson.
"Mrs. Cox teaches math and science in the sixth grade, and she puts fun into learning," Montgomery said.
The students are not required to take the ACT or SAT, but several of them said they're looking forward to taking the exam this year. The ACT and SAT are the traditional college-entrance exams in the U.S., and high scores on these tests can play a major part in receiving college scholarships.
The Duke TIP program is a non-profit educational organization that is recognized as a leader in identifying and serving the educational needs of academically gifted youth. For more information about the program, visit www.tip.duke.edu.

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