Seniors Prepared for the Future
Floyd County Seniors Prepared for the Future
Posted on 03/18/2011
WorkKeys test results for this year show Floyd County seniors are prepared for their next step in life. They are certified ready according to the results shown on the WorkKeys test that ranks ability to process and use skills in reading for information, locating information (critical thinking) and applied mathematics. WorkKeys is an initiative of the state’s Georgia Work Ready program. More than 40,000 adults and students have taken the WorkKeys test across the state.

The administration of the assessment in the fall was the third administration of the WorkKeys assessment in Floyd County Schools. The number of students taking the assessment was up this year and has increased each year. In this third year of seniors taking WorkKeys, the numbers increased from 531 taking the assessment in 2008 to 566 last fall. The number of students earning certificates increased at an even greater rate than the number of students taking the test. This gave Floyd County Schools an impressive total of 91.975% of students taking the assessment earning a certificate. That percentage is up from 86.7% in 2008. Pepperell High was strongly commended in a report on WorkKeys results prepared by Frank Pinson, CEO of the Floyd County Schools College & Career Academy. Pepperell tested 183 seniors and 181 earned certificates. “That is a very impressive 98.9% success rate,” Pinson said. “PHS seniors and the faculty and staff should be very proud of these results and they should be commended. Another area of improvement over last year was the growth in percentage of students moving from bronze to silver and silver to gold level from last year to this year. 

WorkKeys awards four levels of certification: bronze, silver, gold, or platinum. One Floyd County student scored at the platinum level. A very small percentage of adults and students across the state are platinum certified. The state goal is to have 25% of the workforce certified at the gold level. Floyd County seniors had 85 score at the gold level. The state trend is for there to be more test takers scoring at the bronze level than gold. In Floyd County, those numbers are actually very close as 85 scored at gold level and 89 scored at the bronze level. The majority of the students in Floyd County (356) scored at the silver level. The silver total is up significantly from three years ago when the total was 267 earning silver. 

Georgia Northwestern Technical College personnel administer the WorkKeys assessment to seniors in Floyd County Schools each year. The annual administration of the Work Keys is an example of the partnership between Floyd County Schools and Georgia Northwestern. The education institutions are active partners with the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce in economic development for the Rome and Floyd County area through the Floyd County Schools College & Career Academy. Georgia's Work Ready program is a tool available to local communities in Georgia to help validate they have the workforce ready to fill the hiring needs for both existing and new industries. The Governor's workforce development vision links education and workforce development and aligns them with economic development at the state, regional and community levels. 

WorkKeys allows employers to simplify decisions about hiring, training, and program development needs by matching job profile information with assessment scores of Georgia Work Ready Certified potential and incumbent employees. According to the Georgia Work Ready Website, hundreds of thousands of WorkKeys assessments are administered each year to help individuals assess their current skill levels and to determine how improving their skills can lead to better-paying jobs. Students, businesses, and organizations use the WorkKeys tests to improve skill levels and strengthen communication, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills. The WorkKeys test is a product of ACT. 

Companies that use the Georgia Work Ready Certificate program to assess their incoming and current workforce can achieve substantial benefits, including:
  • Improved employee selection and advancement procedures 
  • Reduced overtime 
  • Reduced turnover 
  • Increased productivity 
  • Fewer legal challenges to hiring processes 
  • Higher employee morale 
Pete McDonald, vice president of economic development at Georgia Northwestern Technical College, noted that Work Ready Certification is a tool for community growth and prosperity. “When recruiting new businesses and industry to our community, we can proudly point to the number of individuals certified at certain levels needed by a prospective employer,” McDonald said. “This gives our community a valuable advantage in continuing to promote job growth in Rome and Floyd County.”