In 2017, more than 2,500 students in the DeKalb County School District (DCSD) took the ACT, earning a composite score of 19.8, compared to last year’s composite score of 19.4. As a result, DCSD is moving closer toward exceeding the national composite score of 21.
“Our students have again demonstrated progress on the ACT, and forward momentum is always celebrated. However, our goal is to meet or exceed the national standard, and we will redouble our efforts, through rigorous instruction and determined preparation, toward meeting that goal,” said R. Stephen Green, Superintendent/CEO of DCSD.
Since 2013, DCSD ACT scores have displayed positive increases in student performance, year-over-year, and the district continues to score within one point of the national average toward closing achievement gaps among high school students.
DCSD successfully met the national benchmark score for English Composition. Additionally, among Black/African-American, Hispanic and White students, DeKalb outperformed state averages for ACT student performance in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). The ACT reports national College Readiness Benchmark Scores – A benchmark score is the minimum score needed on an ACT subject-area test to indicate a 50-percent chance of obtaining a B or higher, or about a 75-percent chance of obtaining a C or higher in the corresponding credit-bearing college courses, which include English Composition, Algebra, Social Science, Biology and STEM.
Black/African-American and Hispanic students in DeKalb met the national ACT benchmarks in Reading, and also earned composite scores near or at the same level as the state. The district displayed notable increases in minority student competitiveness with their peers across the state and nation. In fact, Black/African American students in DCSD compete with state percentages relative to the number of ACT scores that exceed state performance in meeting national ACT benchmarks in all tested content areas (English, Mathematics, Reading, Science, and STEM). Hispanic students also showed steady increases in ACT performance and scored comparably to Hispanic students across the state in English/Language Arts.
Seven DCSD high schools exceeded both state and national composite score averages, illustrating significant levels of student readiness for college in all content areas:
- Arabia Mountain High School (20.1)
- Chamblee Charter High School (24.9)
- DeKalb School of the Arts (24.8)
- DeKalb Early College Academy (21.6)
- Druid Hills High School (21.0)
- Dunwoody High School (24.3)
- Lakeside High School (23.4)
DCSD students registered for college readiness assessments at increased rates in 2017. More than 2,500 students took the ACT, and nearly 7,000 students took the SAT. In fact, more DCSD students take the SAT due to the district’s emphasis on using the PSAT in both grades 8 and 10, providing schools with data needed to build college readiness curriculum earlier in a student’s academic career.