ACT, Inc. announced today the completion of an agreement with the National Center for Educational Accountability (NCEA) of Austin, Texas, under which NCEA will operate as an ACT-owned non-profit organization. NCEA will continue providing Just for the Kids school improvement products and services and data-driven best practices research. ACT will provide funding, research, and other support that will allow NCEA to accelerate the delivery of improvement services to schools and districts throughout the country.

    "The partnership between NCEA and ACT is a logical one," said Richard L. Ferguson, ACT Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "Both organizations are committed to providing high-quality, research-based services which, when used properly, promote student success in college and career."

NCEA is a leader in the use of data and best-practice research to foster school improvement. NCEA supports the efforts of educators, policymakers, business leaders, and community leaders as they strive to raise academic expectations and promote practices that help more students enroll in and graduate from college and prepare well for their future careers. ACT is an international not-for-profit organization whose mission is helping people achieve education and workplace success.

    "ACT and NCEA have complementary competencies for supporting continuous school improvement," said Cyndie Schmeiser, President and Chief Operating Officer of ACT's Education Division. "NCEA's focus has been predominately in K-12, while ACT's has been in grade 8 through college, with our EXPLORE, PLAN, ACT, and college outcomes assessments. ACT's WorkKeys system is also used extensively by schools, colleges, and employers across the nation. Together, ACT and NCEA will cover the broad spectrum of K-16 education and workforce development, while providing world-class, comprehensive school improvement assistance."

    "We are thrilled," said Michael Hudson, President of NCEA. "The more we've worked with ACT, the more we have come to admire the organization's mission and research expertise. We're currently outlining multi-year, complementary research and development agendas that we will be pursuing jointly and in tandem. Our goals and objectives are highly compatible and we are confident that the new relationship will benefit children and schools throughout the country."
ACT is a not-for-profit organization that serves millions of people in schools, colleges, professional associations, businesses, and government agencies with programs and services that have one guiding purpose—to help people achieve education and workplace success. For more information about ACT, visit www.act.org.

    The National Center for Educational Accountability is a non-profit, non-partisan organization and the national sponsor of Just for the Kids. The organization's goals are to support efforts to reach excellence in education, to raise academic expectations, and to promote the practices that will help more students reach college/career readiness. For more information about NCEA, visit www.just4kids.org.