Only 60 percent of Minnesota high school graduates passed the ACT exam in 2021 as many college admissions offices dropped testing requirements due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The average cumulative score for the class was 21.6, up from 21.3 a year earlier, according to data released Wednesday by the nonprofit testing organization. Average scores usually go up when participation falls.
“The results for those who passed the test are encouraging, but there is still work to be done to fill the gaps. We must continue to look for ways to ensure the participation and support of all of our students as they prepare them for life after high school, whether in a career or in college, ”Minnesota Commissioner for Education Heather Mueller said in a press release.
Virtually every Minnesota student who graduated between 2016 and 2018 took an ACT because the state requires schools to offer the test during the school day. Since it stopped, participation has dropped to 92 percent from the 2020 class.
The coronavirus in March 2020 made it difficult for many high school students to plan their college entrance exams.
Within months, the University of Minnesota announced that applicants entering its Fall 2021 Freshman class will not need to take an ACT or SAT score.
Several other schools have made a permanent transition to testing electives, including the University of St.Thomas, which did so in February 2020, and McAlester College in April 2020.