But, performance remains very low compared to what we need
A new report from the Kentucky Department of Education lists results for this year’s full testing of all 11th grade students on the ACT college entrance test. Scores are up a bit for most of the student groups reported. However, compared to the ACT benchmark scores that indicate students are fully prepared for entry level college courses, this figure from the ACT Profile Report (with some numbers enlarged for easier reading) shows we have a very, very long way to go in getting reasonable numbers of Kentucky’s high school students ready for college.
For example, the far left bar shows only 49 percent, less than one of two, of Kentucky 11th grade students in 2010 had adequate preparation for freshman college English composition, a course just about universally required at all institutions of higher learning. The second bar from the left indicates only 22 percent are on track for College Algebra, generally about the lowest level college math course offered at most institutions. In the area of reading, only 35 percent are ready for a college social studies course’s reading demands, and in the science area, a scant 15 percent will likely be ready for freshman biology.
Overall, the last bar indicates only 11 percent of the 11th grade class in Kentucky in 2010 is ready across all four subject areas. This 11 percent figure is unchanged from 2009 and is only one point higher than in 2008.
Sadly, preparation for minority groups is generally much worse. Figure 3.5 in the Profile Summary Report shows only two percent of African-American 11th grade students this past school term are ready for college in all four subjects. That is unchanged from the two percent figure reported in the Profile Summary Report from 2008, which is the first year Kentucky did 100 percent ACT testing of all 11th grade students.
The ACT provides important insight into how Kentucky’s school system is performing, and there are a lot of ACT results to discuss in the next few days, so stay tuned.