If you’ve kept an eye on the media, you’ve probably gathered that high schools today are being asked to provide more than “just” a meaningful, high quality, challenging educational experience for their students.
Increasingly, aside from the basics, schools in all fifty states are being asked to provide college-level courses to students ready to move beyond state-mandated classes. This is most often done through advanced placement (AP) classes that offer students the opportunity to earn university credit as a high-schooler.
It is in this environment of our determined pursuit of something greater — something more for our students — that we celebrate Allendale High School being named to the National Advanced Placement Honor Roll!
According to the AP College Board’s website, “Helping more students learn at a higher level and earn higher AP scores is an objective of all members of the AP community, from AP teachers to district and school administrators to college professors.”
And while that may sound easily achievable at first glance, we know there is much that is considered by the board before awarding such an honor. Consider:
- Increased participation/access to AP by at least 4 percent in large districts, at least 6 percent in medium districts, and at least 11 percent in small districts;
- Increased or maintained the percentage of exams taken by African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native students, and;
- Improved performance levels when comparing the percentage of students in 2013 scoring a 3 or higher to those in 2011, unless the district has already attained a performance level at which more than 70 percent of its AP students are scoring a 3 or higher.”
This is particularly meaningful to Mr. Remenap, Dr. Jonker and the district as a whole, because exposing more students to college level rigor is part of their District Strategic Plan. They additionally aim to increase the number of students who receive college credit prior to graduation. This award is a great indicator that the high school is moving forward toward these goals!
After being surprised with the good news at an administrative meeting, Mr. Remenap shared his reflections:
“To be recognized by AP for increasing the number of students exposed to the rigor of college level, AP courses, is something for our entire school to celebrate. Our teachers and counselors continue to preach high expectations and challenge students to push themselves academically, and our students are rising to this challenge. We are very proud of our kids for pushing themselves to perform to the best of their abilities.”