Only 4 percent of Memphis City Schools seniors are ready for college,
based on scoring at least 19 on the ACT, the college entrance exam taken
by district seniors. In other words, of 6,774 seniors, only 271 are
It's a disturbing statistic that speaks to why closing the achievement
gap should be a priority for Memphis and Shelby County. It's also why
brain development of children from birth to age 3 should be a top
priority, since targeted early-childhood interventions pay the most
returns on investment for children.