ACT Composite Score

The ACT is a standardized college admissions exam taken by students across the country. In Kentucky, every student enrolled in public schools takes the ACT during their junior year. ACT scores are a very important component of college applications, and high ACT scores can help students qualify for scholarships. Students’ performance on the ACT is reflective of both their general academic knowledge and their preparedness for the exam.

Trends Over Time

The average ACT score for JCPS students has remained relatively unchanged since 2012, fluctuating between 18.6 to 18.9. The average JCPS student scores around the 43rd percentile, meaning that they do better than 43% of all students who take the exam. JCPS students consistently perform below the Kentucky average. The composite ACT score for JCPS now lies at the 25th percentile.

Differences Based on Race

White students within JCPS continue to perform better on the ACT than their Kentucky counterparts. However, Black and Hispanic students within JCPS currently lag behind their statewide counterparts. In 2017, Asian students were comparable to their Kentucky counterparts and now fall only slightly behind. Hispanic and Black students enrolled in JCPS have never surpassed their state counterparts, but the gap between Hispanic students in JCPS and Kentucky has decreased. Both within JCPS and statewide, Asian students have out-performed the three other racial groups. Black students have consistently performed at the bottom.

Differences Based on Sex

Males and females in Kentucky public schools continue to out-perform their peers in JCPS.  JCPS males consistently have the lowest ACT composite score. JCPS females continue to perform close to Kentucky public school males with scores of 18.8 and 19.0, respectfully. Scores have fallen for all groups since 2017.

Differences Based on Free or Reduced Lunch Status

Students receiving free or reduced lunch have lower ACT composite scores than their counterparts that are above the income requirement to be eligible for free or reduced lunch. ACT composite scores fell for all groups between 2017 and 2018. JCPS students eligible for free and reduced lunch score much lower than their peers in the rest of the state, while JCPS students not eligible for free or reduced lunch score approximately the same as their peers across the state.