Michal Malachowski, a senior at Walt Whitman High School, is the only student in Maryland to achieve a top score of 36 in the December 2008 administration of the ACT exam. Of the approximately 415,000 students nationwide who took the exam in December 2008, only 63 students attained a score of 36.
The ACT is taken by some students applying to college as an alternative to, or in addition to, the SAT. It consists of assessments in English, mathematics, reading, and science that are designed to measure skills needed for success in first-year college coursework.
There has been a steady increase in the number of students in Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) who take the ACT. In 2004, 1,031 MCPS students took the ACT. In 2008, the number increased to 2,355 students, a jump of 620 students from the previous year.
Scores of MCPS students also have increased over the past five years, even as the number of students taking the test has increased. The average composite score for MCPS students in 2008 was 23.8, compared with a Maryland state average of 22.0.
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