A program to get more 11th graders in Iowa to take the ACT this year shows a sizable jump in test takers.
GEAR UP Iowa is a federal program for students with lower-income families to take the test by covering the fees.
About 3,400 students across nine districts, including Cedar Rapids, took the ACT over the past three months.
Iowa College aid estimates less than half of the juniors in these districts would have taken the ACT without this help in covering the cost.
Statewide, ACT testing is about 66 percent. In these 9 districts, about 75 took the test.