Students in Maine Township High School District 207 outperformed their peers across Illinois and across the United States on the ACT college entrance exam.
That was the message of a report presented to the District 207 school board Monday.
The average composite score achieved by District 207 students was 22.4, compared to a national average of 21.1 and a state average of 20.9. The district also did better on each of the ACT’s component tests in English, math, reading and science.
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However, the district’s three schools had widely divergent scores. At Maine South High School in Park Ridge, students had an average composite score of 24.6, better than 77 percent of the students who took the test around the country. Maine South students also did better than the national and state averages on each of the four subject tests that make up the ACT. Maine South was recently highly ranked on a list of best high schools in the state.
At Maine West in Des Plaines, students had an average composite score of 21.3, above the national and state averages. Maine West students also outperformed the country and the state on the math and science tests, but were slightly below their counterparts around the state on reading and English tests.
At Maine East in Park Ridge, students had a higher average score than the Illinois or national average on the math test, but not on any other subject or in the composite score. Maine East’s average composite score was 20.7.
Scores below or just slightly above last year
Maine East and Maine South’s scores were slightly below their scores last year; Maine West’s average composite score was a tenth of a point higher.
Barbara Dill-Varga, the district’s assistant superintendent for instruction, reminded school board members that the report gives just a snapshot of how students did when they took their last ACT. That means that some students may have only taken it once – as part of the Prairie State Achievement Exam in March of their junior year – while others may have taken it multiple times, including into their senior years.
She also said that board members need to be careful about comparing one class to the next.
“It’s different groups of kids. It’s one graduating class against another. They come in with different profiles,” Dill-Varga said, noting that other reports the board receives throughout the year do a better job of telling the story of how students grow and develop over their high school careers.