New Berlin and Muskego high schools get their ACT together
Eisenhower enjoys record-setting scores on standardized test
Both New Berlin high schools and Muskego High School had a higher average composite ACT scores than the state and Woodland Athletic Conference averages.
In fact, New Berlin Eisenhower High School had the second highest college entrance examination score in Waukesha County and the highest in the conference in the 2013 round of ACT testing.
Elmbrook School District, which serves part of New Berlin, also had a higher average composite ACT scores than the state and conference averages. But Nathan Hale High School in the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District, which also serves some New Berlin children, landed below the state and WAC averages.
The ACT seeks to measure the knowledge and skills students need to be successful in college. The ACT tests in English, math, reading and science.
Like all standardized testing, the ACT scores reflect a different group of students each year and are just one year's data, said Melinda Mueller, New Berlin District spokesman.
Even so, New Berlin school officials are especially celebrating because Eisenhower's score of 25 set a school record and the school set a record for highest participation rate, at 90 percent.
Normally, the average composite score goes down when participation rates go up. School officials say that is because students who might not have been thinking of going to college before take the ACT and they may not be as prepared as students who knew all along that they were headed for college.
But both New Berlin high schools combined to have a composite score of 24.3 that is third among Waukesha County school districts.
"We are extremely proud of our students, staff, families and the community for their collective efforts to ensure our students learn at high levels," Superintendent Joe Garza said in a press release announcing the ACT scores.
Still beating average
Like Eisenhower, Muskego High School also had record in participation in 2013, but it did experience a drop in its composite score. Participation rose from 67.5 percent in 2012 to 71.4 percent in 2013. But the composite score dropped from 23.7 in 2012 to 22.9 this year.
Even so, Muskego's average of 22.9 adds to the string of more than five years of beating the statewide average, Lisa Safago, director of school performance, said in an email interview.
Other highlights for Muskego include 81 percent of students meeting the English composition college readiness benchmark and almost seven out of 10 students meeting the mathematics college readiness benchmark, Safago said.
In addition, students who took three or more years of math scored at least 1.5 points higher compared with students who did not take as much math, she said. The same higher scores were experienced by students taking at least three years of social studies and natural science and four years of English.
To improve scores next year, the district is continuing to embed more ACT standards in the curriculum, Safago said.
The district also will offer students additional opportunities to prepare for the ACT, she said. At the same time, Muskego will encourage even more students to take the ACT.
|2013 ACT College Entrance Exam Scores|
New Berlin West High
|Muskego High||State||Waukesha County||Woodland Conference||Elmbrook District||Nathan Hale High, West Allis-West Milwaukee District|
|Percent taking ACT||85%||90%||80%||73%||62%||73%||72%||87.4%||65.5 7%|
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