Students in the Atlanta Public Schools district increased the ACT composite score this year to 19.7, up 0.6 points from 2019 and the highest in recent history, according to data released by the Georgia Department of Education Oct. 14.

But the Atlanta district remains below the state and national averages of 21.7 and 20.6, respectively, and its neighboring major districts’ averages. Atlanta’s score was under the districts in Cobb (23.2), DeKalb (20.7), Fulton (24.4) Gwinnett (23.0) counties.

Buckhead’s Atlanta Classical led the district with a score of 26.2. Last year the school had 15 or less students take the test, not enough to compile an average score. Buckhead’s other public high school, North Atlanta, was third in the district with a score of 24.0, 1.8 points above 2019. Grady (24.2) was second in the district.

On the state level, Georgia’s score of 21.7 increased by 0.3 points over 2019 and was higher than the national average for the fifth straight year. Also, scores in each individual subject area increased and were higher than the national average.

“I am always glad to see Georgia students succeeding, but there’s something special about the class of 2020’s accomplishments,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said in a separate news release. “These students, who saw their senior year come to an abrupt halt due to a global pandemic, have now outscored their peers across the nation on both the SAT and ACT.

“To say I’m proud of them would be an understatement. Georgia continues to exceed expectations on state and national metrics and show that you don’t have to be all about the test to provide a first-class education. That’s thanks to the teachers and students doing the work each day on the classroom level.”

All scores are based on 2020 high school graduates who took the ACT at some time from grades 10 to 12.

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