FAIRLAND, Okla. – A small rural Ottawa County school beat out 14 other schools in the northeast Oklahoma tri-county area to walk away with the highest college entrance exam test scores.
Fairland scored a composite score of 20.45 and Welch School District came in second with a composite score of 19.91, according to the 2020 MEAN ACT data results, released by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
The state average composite score was 18.8, according to the data results.
Fairland Superintendent Jerry Johnson believes these high scores can be traced back to teachers implementing ACT prep curriculum in their lessons.
Fairland schools have a student population of 589 students from kindergarten through 12th grade.
When Fairland students enter the 8th grade, the school encourages them to consider Career Technology held at Northeast Technology Center at Afton or college hours through concurrent enrollment at NEO A&M in their future, Johnson said.
“More of our students have been taking more rigorous classes or concurrent college classes at NEO,” Johnson said. “We believe that exposure to classroom rigor and the ACT Prep go a long way towards improving ACT scores.”
Those subjects are directly measured by the ACT test he said.
“Our strengths lie in upper Science, English and Math,” Johnson said. “Our teachers who teach in these areas are experienced teachers who have taught these subjects for many years and have developed strong relationships with their students.”
“The teachers have offered boot camps to assist the Juniors before the State Mandated test in April,” Johnson said. “They have also been utilizing higher-order thinking questions to make more cognitive demands on students.” These questions cannot be answered by simple recall or reading the information verbatim, he said.
“The questions help the students to analyze and evaluate information and processes more, challenging them to think beyond the lower levels of learning,” Johnson said.
The result – more Fairland students attending college.
Community members and business leaders in Fairland are very active supporters of the school through various food drives, clothing drives, and just giving to meet the needs of students, he said.
“Our Fairland community is a strong supporter of the school in a variety of ways,” Johnson said. “One very important way our community supports the school is through the Fairland Enrichment Foundation, which is made up of local business partners, parents, and community members who raise money each year to put to use for the benefit of students in their classrooms.”
The Enrichment Foundation has been instrumental in helping meet the needs of teachers in their classrooms as well, he said.
MEAN ACT Scores for 2020 Graduates
Highest Performing School was Clasen Advanced Studies in Oklahoma City with a composite score 24.54 and the lowest-scoring school was Emerson Alternative in Oklahoma City with a composite score of 12.73.
For information on other Oklahoma schools log on to https://oklahomawatch.org/2022/06/22/act-scores-for-oklahoma-public-schools/