How Much Do High School Math Teachers Make In Texas Participation in Texas Schools’ Advanced Placement Program on Increase-Minorities Underrepresented

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Participation in Texas Schools’ Advanced Placement Program on Increase-Minorities Underrepresented

The rigorous coursework in the Advanced Placement (AP) program has proven to build a solid foundation for high school students, who plan to attend college after graduation. Most colleges and universities give course credit for AP exam scores of three or higher—students score between one and five on the exam. Even students who score a one or two on the exam have been shown to be better prepared for college-level work than students who do not participate in the program.

A report was recently released by the National College Board, which oversees the AP program across the country. It showed the number of students taking the tests and the representation of diversity, although it focuses only on Hispanic, African American and Native American student groups.

For Texas schools, AP exam participation has increased 61 percent since 2001. However, Hispanic and African-American students were underrepresented on AP exams.

African-American students in Texas schools had the largest gap between the state’s total student population and the percentage who took AP exams. African-American students make up 13.5 percent of the total population, but only 6.8 percent took the exams, a disparity of nearly half of African-American students who opt out of the AP program.

The Hispanic gap is closing in Texas schools with Hispanic students making up 35 percent of the total population and 32.2 percent of test takers.

Texas schools have completely eliminated any gaps for their Native American students with 0.3 percent of the population and 0.5 percent taking AP exams.

Texas Schools Commissioner Shirley J. Neeley said they need to do a better job encouraging minority students in high school to choose to take AP classes and exams in high school .

Students in Texas schools who took AP exams last year were 54,706 Caucasian, 34,976 Hispanic, 10,007 Asian American, 6,826 African American, 514 Native American, and 5,234 who checked “other” or did not answer for ethnicity . Minorities and “others” made up about 49 percent of the testing population in Texas schools, compared to the national average of 33.5 percent.

There were 204,403 AP exams taken by students in Texas schools last year, many taking multiple exams. They scored three or more in 99,428 of them. Designated Texas Schools:

or 8,861 students as AP Scholars for scoring three or more on three or more exams;

or 3,152 as AP Scholars with Honors for:

An average score of at least 3.25 in all exams, i

Scores of three or more on four or more exams; or 4,447 as AP scholars with distinction for:

An average score of at least 3.5 in all exams, i

Scores of three or more on five or more exams;

The National College Board named 752 students from Texas schools as National Scholars for earning an average score of at least four on all exams, with scores of four or higher on eight or more AP exams.

While these results are impressive, Texas schools know they must continue to expand overall enrollment as well as increase the levels of diversity in the AP program. State incentives make the AP program more accessible to students by reducing the per-exam fee by $30, so no student pays more than $52 for an AP exam. In addition, combined federal, state and local grant funding reduces the per-exam fee to just $5 for low-income students.

In addition, Texas schools have expanded their course offerings to attract more students to participate and have used state incentives to train more teachers for the AP program.

Because success in graduate school depends so much on a college degree, AP coursework and exams are essential for all students to succeed in college. Minorities must be equally represented in Advanced Placement classes. Texas schools still have work to do.

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