Valley High School Student Earns Perfect ACT Score

Valley High School junior Arjun Ganga, son of Keka and Prabhakar Ganga of West Des Moines, earned a top composite score of 36 on the ACT test, according to ACT, Inc. This is the highest score possible on the college readiness exam. The national number of students earning a composite score of 36 varies from year to year, but only about one-tenth of one percent of students receive a top score.

The ACT consists of tests in English, mathematics, reading and science. Each test is scored on a scale of 1-36, and a student’s composite score is the average of the four test scores.

Based on 2015 data, Valley High School’s average composite score of 24.2 exceeds both state and national averages. With an average composite score of 22.2, Iowa has the second-highest average ACT composite score in the nation among states that test a majority of their graduating seniors. The national average is 21.0.

Ganga is the co-founder and co-director of the Des Moines Student-to-Student STEM Speaker Series, which provides students with monthly lectures given by STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) professionals. Ganga is a member of the Valley High School science bowl and tennis teams and the Principal’s Advisory Council. He is also involved in National Honor Society, student government, National Council of Youth Leadership, the Silver Cord volunteer program and private piano lessons.