ACT results released last week give the Fulton County School System a record high for both its ACT composite score and the number of students taking the test.
Fulton’s 2011 ACT composite score is 22.8, a 0.4 point increase over the previous year’s score of 22.4, which had previously been the district’s highest overall score. By comparison, the state and national composite scores remained constant with composite scores of 20.7 and 21.1, respectively.
Riverwood saw a increase from 2011 to 24.5, while North Springs scores dipped to 24.5 from 25.1.
Typically, overall test score averages tend to dip when a larger pool of students take a test. In Fulton, 3,150 students took the ACT, as compared to 2,991 the previous year.
“Having an increased composite score of 22.8 is good, especially since our number of test-takers has grown, but we want more students to score higher and meet the rigors of college admission,” said Superintendent Robert Avossa. “Our goal is to have a significantly high number of graduates be college-ready by 2017.”
2012 marks the seventh consecutive year that Fulton’s scores have increased or remained constant.
The ACT sets “College Readiness Benchmarks” as part of its testing measurement. In Fulton, the percentage of students meeting these benchmarks and demonstrating college readiness increased at a higher rate than the state or the nation. Thirty-nine percent of Fulton’s seniors demonstrated college-readiness in all four areas of the test – English, math, reading and science – as measured by the ACT. Twenty-two percent of Georgia students and 25 percent of students across the nation demonstrated this same college-readiness.
Similar to the SAT, the ACT is commonly used for college admission and placement. According to the organization, the test is increasingly becoming the preferred admission test by four-year colleges, and more students are deciding to take the ACT in addition to, or in place of, the SAT.
The ACT measures English, math, reading and science proficiency, with an optional writing section, whereas the SAT measures only math, reading and writing. Scored on a scale of 1 to 36, with 36 being the highest possible score, the test is taken voluntary by students throughout the year.
A pdf of the report showing ACT scores for each school accompanies this article.