Sep 18, 2012

School District Also Boasts Largest Increase in Number of Students Taking Exam

BATON ROUGE, La. - The average composite score on the ACT for students in the Recovery School District (RSD) New Orleans rose four-tenths of a point from 16.4 to 16.8 from 2011 to 2012 - representing an increase four times the statewide average which rose one-tenth of a point from 20.2 to 20.3 during the same timeframe.  In the last two years, the average composite score for RSD New Orleans has increased a total of 1.2 points, up from 15.6 in 2010, ranking fifth in the state for overall progress.

"Students in New Orleans continue to make significant strides in academic achievement," said Patrick Dobard, Superintendent of the Recovery School District.  "The steady increase in results, year after year, proves what we have always believed - that all students can learn and achieve.  We will continue to work until each and every child gains the knowledge and skills to succeed in college and careers after graduation."

The Recovery School District (RSD) New Orleans also led the state in growing the number of students who take the ACT.  The number of students taking the test jumped nearly 23 percent, from 738 to 905 students, between 2011 and 2012.

Students in a majority of school districts made gains on the ACT, according to district-by-district results provided by the Louisiana Department of Education.  State results released last month showed an increase in the average composite score, from 20.2 in 2011 to 20.3 in 2012.  Meanwhile, the national average composite remained unchanged at 21.1.  As the state’s average composite score increased, so did the number of public and nonpublic students in Louisiana taking the ACT, from 35,870 in 2011 to 36,736 in 2012.  Comparing the 2011 and 2012 average ACT composite scores for districts, 42 out of 71 districts achieved gains.  From 2010 to 2011, 41 districts saw gains in average composite scores.

"The New Orleans Recovery School District increased their average score while, at the same time, increasing participation, which makes the results even more impressive," said State Superintendent John White.  "The rise in both participation and achievement in New Orleans is a promising sign as we begin to expand the test to students in 8th through 11th grade."

Starting this school year, Louisiana will administer the ACT test series to all public school students in grades 8, 9, 10, and 11 as part of the state’s comprehensive plan for continued improvement, Louisiana Believes.  Administering the exam in middle school and throughout high school will provide an assessment of student progress that can be used to keep students on track to graduate ready for college and career.

Furthermore, through Louisiana’s Elementary and Secondary Education Act Waiver Application, the state will include student scores on ACT tests in a simplified school performance score, beginning in the 2012-2013 school year.  The ACT will account for 25 percent of the School Performance Score for high schools.  Additionally, for the first time, high schools will earn points for students who demonstrate growth throughout their performance on the series of ACT tests.

For district-level ACT results for 2007-2012, please click here.

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