ERIC Number: ED432635
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Gateways to Success: A Report on Urban Student Achievement and Course-Taking.
ACT, Inc., Iowa City, IA.; Council of the Great City Schools, Washington, DC.
This report examines the effects of high school courses on students' readiness for college-level work. ACT Assessment scores for 1998 for graduates of Council of the Great City Schools member high schools are compared with those for 1997 graduates and with students nationally. All data are analyzed by course-taking patterns, school district wealth, student ethnicity, and gender. The report also examines the gap between urban students' readiness for college and their college expectations. Findings support the view that every urban student considering attending college should take a program of college preparatory courses, including 4 years of English, 3 or more years of mathematics, 3 or more years of social studies, and 3 or more years of science. The racial and ethnic composition of ACT urban test takers continues to be quite different from test takers nationally; three-fourths of urban test takers were children of color. Urban students increased their average ACT composite score between 1997 and 1998, although the national average remained unchanged. Of the 52 Great City Schools studied, only 15% (8 districts) had 1998 average ACT composite scores at or above the national average. These findings and other data from the study suggest the importance of taking courses that are rigorous enough to prepare a student for high school and preclude the need for remedial coursework after high school. Recommendations and promising practices are suggested to improve the academic achievement and college success rate of urban students. Appendixes define core courses, present standards for transition, and list numbers of ACT-tested graduates by Great City Schools district. (Contains 26 figures.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: ACT, Inc., Iowa City, IA.; Council of the Great City Schools, Washington, DC.