Participation in exams also rises
More Blair and MCPS students are taking Advanced Placement (AP) exams and are scoring higher than state and national averages, according to data released by the College Board this year.
Both Blair and MCPS exceeded national and Maryland averages in both AP participation rates and exam scores. Maryland's percentage of last year's graduating seniors who earned at least a three on an exam graded on a scale of one to five is the country's second-highest, behind only New York.
Blair, MCPS and Maryland have followed the national trend of rising participation rates and exam scores. The percentage of MCPS graduates who took at least one AP test rose by 12.3 percent between 2002 and 2006, while Blair's participation rate rose by 7.7 percent over the same period, according to a report issued by the MCPS Department of Shared Accountability.
This marked rise in participation is a reflection of several countywide efforts, including student awareness and outreach initiatives. "Students and parents are more savvy about the value of the AP," said Faith Connolly, director of the MCPS Department of Shared Accountability.
MCPS has also worked to identify students capable of taking more rigorous courses. One program, the Honors/AP Potential Identification Tool, uses indicators such as SAT scores to determine whether students should take higher-level courses.
Justin Vlasits. Justin Vlasits is a CAP senior who enjoys It's Academic, baseball, guitar and frisbee in addition to watching weird movies and contemplating the meaning of life. Justin is also a revolutionary member of SGR and will someday overthrow oppressive capitalism all over the world. More »