(WBIR-Knoxville) High schoolers in Tennessee rank among the worst in the country for ACT scores.
Tennessee students who graduated from public high schools this spring had an average composite score of 19.5. Only 18% achieved college readiness, which is compared to 26% nationwide.
A score of 21 considers a student ready for college. A perfect score is 36.
For Knox County, Superintendent Dr. Jim McIntyre says the composite ACT score went down from 20.6 to 20.2 for the 2013 class.
He says the decrease is partly due to the fact that the ACT changed its methodology and counted students this year that took the "extended time ACT." However, even without that change the average score would have been a 20.4, which is still below the college readiness score of 21.
McIntynre says he was disappointed to see the slight decrease, but is confident that teachers are working hard and are focusing on the right improvement areas. He also believes a renewed focus on common core standards will being up the ACT scores over time.
Nationally, Tennessee ranks only above North Carolina and Mississippi.