Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Manchester School District placed on AP Honor Roll for 2016 achievements


Manchester School District is one of 433 school districts in the U.S. and Canada being honored by the College Board with placement on the 7th Annual AP® District Honor Roll.  The distinction recognizes that since 2014, Manchester has increased the number of students participating in Advanced Placement courses while also increasing or maintaining the percentage of students earning AP Exam scores of 3 or higher. Reaching these goals shows that Manchester is successfully identifying motivated, academically prepared students who are ready for AP.

“Our teachers, administrators, families and counselors encourage students to challenge themselves in various AP subjects that include world history, physics, English literature, computer science, and studio art,” said Superintendent Dr. Bolgen Vargas. “More students every year are committed to raising the bar on achievement goals, and the teachers work hard with students to prepare them well for the exams.”

National data from 2016 show that among black/African American, Hispanic, and Native American students with a high degree of readiness for AP, only about half are participating. The first step to getting more of these students to participate is to give them access. Courses must be made available, gatekeeping must stop, and doors must be equitably opened. Manchester School District is committed to expanding the availability of AP courses among prepared and motivated students of all backgrounds.

“Congratulations to all the teachers and administrators in Manchester who have worked so tirelessly to both expand access to AP and also to help students succeed on the AP Exams,” said Trevor Packer, the College Board’s head of AP and Instruction. “These teachers and administrators are delivering real opportunity in their schools and classrooms, and students are rising to the challenge.”

In 2016, more than 4,000 colleges and universities around the world received AP scores for college credit, advanced placement, or both, and/or consideration in the admission process.

Inclusion on the 7th Annual AP District Honor Roll is based on a review of a district’s AP data over the most recent three years, from 2014 to 2016.

Districts must:
     increase participation/access to AP by at least 4% in large districts, at least 6 % in medium districts, and at least 11% in small districts; Manchester is a medium-sized district and saw an increase of 49.8% over those two years. A closer look at the increase reveals that in 2014, Manchester’s enrollment of black and Latino students was at 18 and 58 respectively. In 2016, 81 black students and 91 Latino students were enrolled in AP courses.
     increase or maintain the percentage of exams taken by black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native students who scored 3+ on at least one AP Exam; the rate in Manchester rose from 7% in 2014 to 50% in 2016.
     improve or maintain performance levels when comparing the 2016 percentage of students scoring a 3 or higher to the 2014 percentage, unless the district has already attained a performance level at which more than 70% of its AP students earn a 3 or higher; Manchester’s percentage of those students scoring at least a 3 in 2016 was 83%, up from 75% in 2014.

Some of Manchester’s success can be attributed to an increase in the number of AP course offerings, up from 11 to 17 over the past three years, which generates more student interest in pursuing various subjects. Additionally, AP teachers in Manchester have participated in a week-long summer study session the past few years. The AP Institute provides those teachers with training on instruction of the advanced placement subject matter and prepare students for the exams. There’s also an ongoing effort in every high school by teachers and counselors who see the potential in their students to recruit them for AP courses.

This is Manchester School District’s second time on the AP Honor Roll, having earned the recognition in 2014. The complete 7th Annual AP District Honor Roll can be found online

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