MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Garrison Keillor's well-known line about Lake Wobegon where "all the children are above average" rings true in Minnesota's overall performance on the ACT college admission exam.

The state remains best in the nation on the ACT test for the eighth consecutive year. Minnesota high school seniors scored higher than those in other states in which at least half of students took the exam. Thirty-nine percent of seniors are proficient across the board, compared to 36 percent in 2012.

Minnesota's average composite score was 23 out of a possible 36.

A persistent achievement gap remains between white and minority students. Sixty-one percent of white students were college ready in three subjects compared to 16 percent of black students. But, the majority of the state's minority groups outperformed their national counterparts.