Mark Taylor
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Gardner-Edgerton and Spring Hill students continue to excel on ACT tests.
National scores for the ACT, a preparation test for college-bound high school students, were released by ACT officials on Aug. 17.
The ACT tests proficiency in English, math, reading and science. Each test is scored between 1-36. The four scores are averaged for an overall composite score.
The Gardner-Edgerton School District posted one of the highest composite ACT scores in the district’s history.
The average composite score for Gardner-Edgerton students was 23.1 in 2011, compared with 22.8 in 2010.
The national average composite score was 21.1, and the stage average was 22.
“Our administration, staff, students and educational services department have worked diligently to improve the overall ACT composite scores over the past few years by implementing new and advanced placement courses and ACT prep classes into the curriculum,” said Bill Gilhaus, superintendent of the Gardner-Edgerton School District.  “It’s evident the advanced educational opportunities and commitment to excellence from our staff and students contributed to the district’s continued academic success.”
Gardner-Edgerton students are encouraged to enroll in advanced placement tests to help prepare them for ACT tests and college.
“It’s extremely important that we continue to focus on improving our students’ ACT scores because success on the ACT translates into higher education opportunities and scholarship opportunities for our students,” Gilhaus said.
The Spring Hill School District also exceeded state and national averages, posting a composite score of 22.2 in 2011, compared with 22.6 in 2010.
Spring Hill also takes a proactive approach to ACT preparation, offering a semester-long ACT course.
“The high school’s administration and staff encourage students to take more challenging courses in order to be better prepared for their post-secondary education,” said
Angelo Cocolis, principal of Spring Hill High School.
Karen Brack, director of curriculum and instruction for Spring Hill, added, “ Looking beyond the composite score, the ACT results show that taking upper-level coursework beyond core classes throughout their high school career score improves students’ achievement.”