.

Students Passing the AP Test in Increasing Numbers at 6 O.C. Districts

Among them are three districts with schools in Patch towns: Saddleback Valley Unified, Los Alamitos Unified and Huntington Beach Union.

Six school districts in Orange County have been placed on the College Board's "AP Honor Roll."
Six school districts in Orange County have been placed on the College Board's "AP Honor Roll."

Originally posted at 4:39 p.m. Feb. 12, 2014. Edited to add quote from the Los Alamitos Unified School District superintendent. 

Six of Orange County’s 15 school districts which serve high school students have been placed on the College Board’s “AP Honor Roll.”

The distinction means the districts are increasing access to AP classes while simultaneously increasing the percentage of students earning passing scores of 3 or higher on the AP test.

“Achieving  both of these goals is the ideal scenario for a district’s AP program because it indicates that the district is successfully identifying motivated, academically prepared students who are likely to benefit most from rigorous AP course work,” according to the College Board, which administers the exams.

The six Orange County districts that achieved those goals in 2013 are Los Alamitos Unified, Saddleback Valley Unified, Huntington Beach Union High School District, Irvine Unified, Santa Ana Unified and Tustin Unified. The first three have high schools in Patch towns.

"This is an honor in which we are all very proud," said Los Al Superintendent Sherry Kropp. "We know that increasing access and passage rates on AP exams is a strong indicator that we are preparing all students for success following high school graduation in whatever college or career path they choose."

Missing on the list from Patch towns are Capistrano Unified, Laguna Beach Unified and Newport-Mesa Unified.

The College Board says more high school students than ever are taking AP classes and passing AP tests, in a recent “report card” to the nation.

Nationwide, more than 1 million students took AP tests last year, up about 100 percent since 2003. Of those million, 60 percent scored a three or higher, according to the College Board. These days, one in five public school high school graduates have scored a three or better on an AP test.

In California, 26.9 percent of the Class of 2013 took and passed an AP exam during their high school career. That’s above the national average of 20.1 and ranks the state six in the nation.

“It’s important to recognize that not only are more and more students feeling equipped to tackle these college-level courses, but that more and more of them are succeeding,” said Tom Torlakson, state superintendent of public instruction, in a press release. “Along with their schools and families, they are working hard to be ready for college, and I’m glad to see the numbers continue to climb.”

According to the College Board, students who score a three or higher on AP tests are more likely to get better grades in college, are more likely to finish college and in faster time than their counterparts.

Don Schultz February 12, 2014 at 08:16 PM
Something smells fishy. I have no evidence and have done no research but this article mentions "increasing the percentage" and while I am glad these districts are "increasing", could it be that LB and Capo are already HIGH in area and, thus, are not included as "increasing"? If my hunch is correct, this article is clearly misleading and needs to be corrected. Give is the TOTAL percentages for each district.
Penny Arévalo (Editor) February 12, 2014 at 08:21 PM
Unfortunately, the College Board did not break down the statistics by district. But they do have a fairly extensive report. You can find the links to download the reports here: http://apreport.collegeboard.org/
LeAna Bui February 12, 2014 at 10:13 PM
While I agree with Mr. Schulz that district data would be nice, the report does not share that. I am inclined to agree that CUSD probably already has a high participation rate in the APs and their focus has not been on increasing that rate.
shelly February 12, 2014 at 10:20 PM
"The AP Honor Roll The AP Honor Roll recognizes and honors those outstanding school districts that simultaneously increase access to Advanced Placement® course work while increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP Exams. Achieving both of these goals is the ideal scenario for a district’s AP program because it indicates that the district is successfully identifying motivated, academically prepared students who are likely to benefit most from rigorous AP course work." ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ CUSD was on the AP Honor Roll in 2011.
shelly February 12, 2014 at 10:21 PM
Laguna Beach was on it 2012
fact checker February 12, 2014 at 10:39 PM
Thank you for the whole story Shelly. It would have been nice to see that kind of info in the original article. Otherwise these types of articles are misused by those who are trying to make CUSD look bad.
Penny Arévalo (Editor) February 12, 2014 at 10:41 PM
This article is going out to all of Orange County. It mentions all districts in Patch towns that are on the list and not on the list. But I do thank Shelly for the additional info. :-)
fact checker February 12, 2014 at 10:45 PM
"Missing on the list from Patch towns are Capistrano Unified, Laguna Beach Unified and Newport-Mesa Unified." What is the reader to derive from that sentence? Shelly's information provided the answer.
Penny Arévalo (Editor) February 12, 2014 at 10:48 PM
Not for this year. The news is for 2013. OC actually had a very good showing compared to other counties.
fact checker February 12, 2014 at 10:55 PM
So it would seem that Don and LeAna are correct in assuming that CUSD and LBUSD already have demonstrated success in pass rates.
Penny Arévalo (Editor) February 12, 2014 at 10:57 PM
Yes, in past years. Now let's not make this all about CUSD. In 2013, the districts that made the College Board's honor roll should get the limelight. This story is about the latest results.
fact checker February 12, 2014 at 11:12 PM
Tell that to Dawn. She has already started her crusade on this subject. Since this is a Patch in San Juan Capistrano and you have already mentioned CUSD and LBUSD it would seem more informative to mention that they have already been on the list. Your sentence has a negative slant ("missing from the list").
fact checker February 12, 2014 at 11:13 PM
But you are the editor...
Shripathi Kamath February 12, 2014 at 11:35 PM
Tough crowd :-) Congrats to all the kids and those who teach them. This is very good news, I hope the trend continues.
ldana92 February 13, 2014 at 09:22 AM
I thought the AP tests are given in May??? It is only Feb.
Chantelle Longpre Wolfe February 13, 2014 at 09:51 AM
How will Common Core prepare our kids for future AP classes? Or the SAT/ACT for that matter?
LeAna Bui February 13, 2014 at 11:07 AM
Thank you, Shelly for sharing that info!
Joker Joe February 13, 2014 at 11:26 AM
My question is did the teachers fudge the test scores or were they done in ALL honesty?
keyplayer February 13, 2014 at 11:32 AM
Wow, Joker. I think your petticoat is showing. Teachers have nothing to do with grading the AP tests. But then, you wouldn't have a clue about that, would you?
Shripathi Kamath February 13, 2014 at 11:40 AM
ldana92 February 13, 2014 at 09:22 AM I thought the AP tests are given in May??? It is only Feb. ___________________________________________________ They are being done proactively for 2013.
Don Schultz February 15, 2014 at 10:37 AM
"The distinction means the districts are increasing access to AP classes while simultaneously increasing the percentage of students earning passing scores of 3 or higher on the AP test" While this may be the "ideal scenario" as you call it, never ending improvement is hardly sustainable unless the rules of the game change which they will. The problem with your article is that its misleading, it leads the uninitiated reader to conclude that CUSD and LB some how came up short compared to the districts on the list. This is not true. Neither CUSD nor LB would trade their scores with ANY of those other districts because CUSD's and LB's record is better, just not improving as much as the others because they have less to improve upon. CUSD is among the top large districts in the state and LB is among the elite small districts. Both are constantly and consistently improving.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something