Zionsville Community High School student achieves rare feat of perfect ACT score


Zionsville Community High School junior Katherine Berman has achieved a rare feat by earning the highest possible ACT composite score of 36.

“I wasn’t really expecting it,” Berman said. “But I was anxiously checking the website, and when I saw the score, I was really excited.”

Berman, 17, said she was surprised by her score because she hadn’t had a lot of time to study because of a mix-up of the test dates. Her mother, Stacy, however, was not as shocked.

“She’s always been really bright,” Stacy Berman said. “She works really hard in school and takes a lot of AP classes, which I think has prepared her well for the test.”

The ACT, like the SAT, is an exam used by most colleges and universities for admissions.

“Earning a top score on the ACT is a remarkable achievement,” ACT CEO Janet Godwin stated in a press release. “A student’s exceptional score of 36 will provide any college or university with ample evidence of their readiness for the academic rigors that lie ahead.”

According to the same press release, fewer than half of 1 percent of students who take the ACT earn the top score. In the U.S. high school graduating classes of 2021, only 4,055 out of 1.29 million students who took the ACT earned a top composite score of 36.

Stacy Berman said her daughter has always excelled at schoolwork. When she attended Zionsville Middle School, Katherine would take a bus to the high school for a pre-calculus honors class. Her mother also said that Katherine was the first student in ZCHS history to take calculus as a freshman

Berman has been several grades ahead of her peers in math since elementary school.

When Berman is not doing schoolwork, she stays busy with competitive cheerleading. Her team, Infinity, which practices at Interactive Academy on Michigan Road, meets four times a week and participates in several competitions throughout the year.

Berman plans on studying a science-related subject in college and is in the process of making a college choice.