Aiken County ACT Scores Increase, Top National Average - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

Aiken County ACT Scores Increase, Top National Average

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Aiken, SC -

WJBF News Channel 6 has learned that Aiken County students' ACT scores have increased and are above the national average.

Read the text of the press release below:

ACT college entrance exams scores released today indicate that Aiken County is among the top 11 districts in the state with a composite score of 21.4, improving over the 2012 district score and topping the state and nation. Aiken County Public Schools ACT scores bested the state and nation in all four areas: English, reading, math and science. Composite scores around the district increased at three high schools (Aiken, Ridge Spring-Monetta and Wagener-Salley) and decreased at the remaining four (South Aiken, North Augusta, Silver Bluff and Midland Valley).  Aiken High, with a 22.8 composite score, ranked among the top 20 ACT scoring high schools in the state. 

District Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Everitt stated, "Once again, our high school students show that they are well prepared for the work force and college. Our students are learning state, national and world-class skills that provide them more opportunities for successful career paths."

South Carolina's 2013 public high school participation rate on the ACT college entrance exam slightly decreased with 60 less test-takers (18,443 students) while Aiken County saw an increase in ACT test takers with 43 additional students participating.

Dr. Randy Stowe, Director of Administrative Services, stated, "We are pleased to see that our district average on the ACT has increased steadily over the past few years, even though more students are taking the test.  The ACT is not as well known as the SAT as a test for college admissions, but more and more students are taking the ACT because most colleges will accept either score for admission.  The two tests are designed differently, with the ACT more closely aligned with the content of the high school courses and the SAT assessing aptitude for success in college.  Many students are taking both tests to maximize their changes of acceptance to the college of their choice."

For more information on the ACT, please visit or contact Aiken County Public Schools testing division at 803.641.2490.  Local and state testing data is located on the district website at  (click on Programs, Services and Information link) as well as the State Department of Educations website at .

NOTE: ACT made two changes in this year's ACT Condition of College and Career Readiness state reports which impact the ability to make direct comparisons with previous years' reports.

1.      The ACT College Readiness Benchmarks scores have been updated this year to reflect changes in student college performance that have taken place over time, as detected in our routine monitoring of predictive validity. The English and Mathematics Benchmark scores remain the same, but the Science Benchmark score has gone down by 1 point, from 24 to 23, while the Reading Benchmark score has gone up by 1 point, from 21 to 22. As a result of these necessary changes, readiness levels in Reading and Science are not comparable to those of previous years.

2.      College reportable scores for accommodated students are included in the report for the first time. Prior to this year, scores for time-extended accommodated students were excluded from our summary reporting. As a result of this change, the average ACT Composite score has declined significantly in some states, particularly those which administer the ACT to all public school students. The drop in the average ACT score should not be interpreted as a decline in student achievement; rather, the 2013 data should serve as a new baseline to which future years' data can be directly compared.

 More detail on each of these changes can be found here.

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