The 2009 ACT results are in and while many hoped for gains, the overall state combined score of 18.2 showed a slight decline from the 18.3 posted in 2008. In only its second year of mandated ACT testing for all Kentucky high school juniors, many say it’s too early to look for trends and determine their meaning. However, one thing the ACT results made clear is that Kentucky high school juniors are not ready for college. Based on the 2009 ACT scores, only 46 percent of Kentucky’s juniors are ready for college-level English classes, 21 percent are ready for college-level algebra, 30 percent are ready for science and only 16 percent are ready for biology college courses.
On a local level, Nelson County and Bardstown high schools did well by posting higher composite scores than the state average of 18.2.
Nelson County’s overall composite score was 18.8 with posted increases over 2008 in English, math, science and reading. Bardstown High School posted an overall composite score of 18.3, but saw declines in all four subject areas compared to last year’s test scores.
On the positive side while the state-wide results may not be where we would like them to be at least this is a starting point for improvements. There is much needed work in aligning our high school curriculum with college entrance expectations to better prepare graduating seniors. As Kentucky pushes to make higher education more attainable for our young adults, using ACT mandatory testing as a benchmark of progress is a good first step.
Hat tip to KSBA.