ACT scores at Topeka High increasing despite pandemic

Education 21st Century

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – The number of students getting an ACT score of 30 and above is increasing at Topeka High, where 12 students have gotten a score of 30 or above.

So far this year, that number is up from last school year, which was 11 students. The school year before that it was seven students who got a score higher than 30.

“The first time I took it was February of my junior year. And so then I had plenty of time between then and October to study,” Topeka High senior Kelm Lear said.

Lear was one of the students who got a 29 the first time around, and then a 32 the second time he took the test. Lear said he had more downtime to study because of the pandemic, which helped his score improve.

The extra time studying is a word of advice he’s passing onto his younger brother as he prepares to take the test as a freshman.

“To just pace yourself. Don’t overwhelm yourself with having to study every day on top of your homework and extracurricular activities,” Lear said. “Just set like a 30-minute timer for a few times a week and you’ll be fine.”

While the extra studying helped Lear’s score improve, his classmate James Peck said he didn’t have to study much to prepare for the test.

Peck said he took the ACT four times and improved his score from a 29 to a 35, which he attributes to the experience of taking the test more than once.

“Most times, pretty much everything you need to know is in there,” Peck said. “Like the science section people always say is really hard, but you don’t actually have to know science. You just have to know how to read a graph and you can do pretty well.”

Students have three more chances to take the ACT this year in March, April and June.

501 district officials expect the number of students who get a score of 30 and over will increase even more by the end of the school year.

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