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Hawkins County Schools See Significant Increase in ACT Scores

Hawkins County Schools See Significant Increase in ACT Scores


Rogersville –For the second consecutive year, ACT scores in Hawkins County have shown marked improvement. Last year, the district saw a significant increase in the composite score at 18.8 (up 8 tenths of a point from the previous year). For 2015, the district saw increases in all subject areas (Math, English, Reading, and Science) plus the composite score of 19.3 increased an additional five tenths of a point from the composite of 18.8 in 2014. By comparison, the State’s ACT composite score rose slightly with the average composite increasing from 19.3 in 2014 to 19.4 in 2015.

The ACT test is designed to assess the general educational development of high school students and their ability to complete college-level coursework. The tests represent a curriculum-based measure of the percentage of students meeting the college readiness benchmark scores established in the four core areas (English =18, Mathematics=22, Social Studies=22, and Biology=23). Tennessee is one of 13 states nationwide that require all students to take the ACT.

The percent of students meeting the benchmark score in Hawkins County for math was 25% compared to the state average of 27%. In Reading, 34% of Hawkins County students met the benchmark compared to 35% for the state. The percent of students meeting all four benchmarks in Hawkins County was 14% compared to the State average of 17%.

ACT research has shown that it is the rigor of the coursework, rather than simply the number of core courses, that has the greatest impact on ACT performance and college readiness.

Director of Schools Steve Starnes stated, “The growth in all areas tested, as well as closing the gap between the state average and our system’s average on the ACT composite, provides key signs that the programs and interventions we have established in the classroom are paying off. Our teachers are to be commended for increasing the rigor in the core curriculum as well as meeting each student’s needs through Response to Instruction and Intervention. Certainly, the students in the Class of 2015 deserve recognition as well for posting the highest composite ACT scores in Hawkins County in the last 5 years. We will continue to monitor and assess our educational programs across the district as we focus on quality core instruction in all classes.”

Additional highlights of the ACT results from Hawkins County Schools, as reported by ACT, Inc., include the following:

·         Volunteer High School improved scores in three of four subject areas with English being the only subtest score to decline from 18.7 in 2014 to 18.6 in 2015. The composite increased by two tenths of a point from 19.1 to 19.3. The largest gain made by Volunteer High School was in the area of Reading rising from 19.5 to 19.9.


·         Cherokee High School saw improved scores in all four subject areas. Cherokee saw an increase in the composite score of seven tenths of a point from 18.6 to 19.3. The largest gains made by Cherokee were in the areas of English by nine tenths of a point (18.0 to 18.9) and Science by eight tenths of a point (18.4 to 19.2)


·         Clinch had an ACT composite of 19.0 up from 16.6 in 2014 (2.4 point gain) and improved scores in all four subject areas with the largest gain in Reading by 3.2 points from 15.8 to 19.0.

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It is the policy of the Hawkins County School System not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, or disability in its educational programs or employment policies as required by Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Equal Pay Act of 1963, Title IX (1972 Educational Amendments), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act.