Alabama high school graduates maintained steady scores on the ACT college admission test but lagged behind the national average.
The Alabama Department of Education on Wednesday released scores for 2016 public school graduates. The average composite score in Alabama was 18.7. That compares to the national average of 20.8.
Interim State Superintendent of Education Dr. Philip Cleveland said he was pleased with the growth in scores while also noting there was room for improvement.
Alabama now requires all high school juniors to take the ACT. Scores typically go down when more students are tested, not just the ones planning on attending college.
More than 50,000 Alabama public school students took the ACT in 2016, compared to about 33,000 in 2012.