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      Education officials: Report cards raise concern

      Student performance in South Carolina schools either stagnated or declined at all levels from 2008-2009.

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Student performance in South Carolina's public schools either stagnated or declined across all grade levels from 2008 to 2009, but don't look to state report cards for the evidence.

      Schools posted better marks on their first report cards following a law that revamped South Carolina's statewide testing in younger grades. But education officials caution against comparing the scores to 2008, saying the boost isn't real.

      The annual report cards released Friday by the state Education Department come five months later than usual. The ratings are based on student performance on standardized tests taken in the spring.

      The 2009 ratings were delayed as the state switched to new tests and a new scoring system for third- through eighth-graders. Scoring for high schools and districts hasn't yet changed.

      (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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