JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi’s ACT scores fell sharply in the first year that all public school seniors in the Magnolia State took the test.
The state’s 2016 high school graduates made an average composite score of 18.4 on the college entrance exam, dipping below the 19 that students scored in 2014 and 2015.
The dip wasn’t a surprise, as it includes results from spring 2015, the first time Mississippi paid for all high school juniors to take the test. Those results didn’t register until that class graduated in spring 2016. When the testing pool expands, results typically drop, because students least likely to be going to college are included.
The number of Mississippi students tested rose by 6,000 to 36,000.
The national average fell to 20.8 in 2016 from 21 the year before.