New Trier sets new ACT record
Winnetka Friday, 8/31/12 Post-high school counselor, Dan Rogan talks with New Trier senior, Eliza Wever, 17, of Winnetka at the school Friday. Last year's senior class earned an average composite score of 27.7 on the ACT test. The average for all students in Illinois was 20.9. | Brian O'Mahoney~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 28, 2012 10:55AM
WINNETKA — One year after setting the record for highest ACT scores in school history, the students at New Trier High School did it again as the class of 2012 registered an average composite score of 27.7.
The class of 2012, which graduated in the spring, had 917 students take the exams and finish with a cumulative score which was .2 percent higher than the previous school record set by the class of 2011.
The score far exceeded the state average of 20.9.
“Our kids did extraordinary,” Superintendent Linda Yonke said. “The ACT is one of the most valid tests out there right now. It’s accepted by every college in the whole country and the scores are reliable.”
Yonke added that tests can “only go so far” to indicate how kids will perform in college, but in terms of pre-college testing the ACT is one of the best.
New Trier does not incorporate any ACT preparation into any of their courses, but Yonke cited several factors behind the positive results.
“Our kids are generally from families who value education,” she said. “They’ve had great elementary and middle school teachers. Their parents support them and value academic achievement. It’s a wonderful foundation they have before they come to New Trier.”
Though the class of 2012 is gone, the class of 2013 already is making plans for their post-high school life once they graduate this spring.
The high school counseling office is very busy these days with students waiting for appointments to speak with post-high school counselors like Jim Conroy, who recently helped senior Eliza Weaver with her early application to Georgetown University.
“I did a little preparation and met with a tutor once,” Weaver said about preparing for her ACT test last year. “I didn’t think it was that difficult, but the timing was a little short (to complete the test).”
Down the hall, senior Kevin Minor met with counselor Tom Shorrock. Minor, who is looking at the University of Richmond, Tulane University, DePaul University and Indiana University, among other schools, took some ACT prep classes, but had a different type of advice for this year’s junior class.
“The prep classes helped me, but not as much as a good night of sleep and a good breakfast,” Minor said.
Yonke was most proud of the fact that, unlike a magnet school, New Trier is made up of students from surrounding communities.
“These are all kids who live in our district,” Yonke said. “This is representative of a lot of kids across a broad spectrum of backgrounds and abilities. It’s really phenomenal.”