VBCPS - Charting the Course
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Lauren Nolasco
Date: 11/17/16 Phone: 757.263.1234
News Release No. 029 Fax: 757.263.1010
Email: lauren.nolasco@vbschools.com

More VBCPS students enrolled in AP classes
than ever before, AP exam scores rise

Another key academic measure shows increased rigor and student achievement in Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS). According to the College Board, more VBCPS students enrolled in Advanced Placement (AP) courses, took a record number of AP exams and performed better than ever before.

AP classes provide opportunities for students to take advanced coursework in subject areas - and potentially earn college credit - while still in high school.

More than 6,825 VBCPS students were enrolled in AP classes during the 2015-16 school, an increase of 380 students from the previous year. Specifically, the greatest one-year increase was for African-American students. There were nine percent more African-American students enrolled in an AP course in 2015-16 than in 2014-15.

There were 33 different AP courses offered in Virginia Beach schools last year. There was a six percent increase of students taking the end of year AP exam from 2014-15 to 2015-16, and, of those exam-taking students, 58.3 percent earned a 3 or higher on the exam. AP exams are scored from 1-5, with most colleges and universities accepting scores of 3 or higher as credit for courses.

“This data is spectacular,” said VBCPS Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence. “We are seeing growth in every area of our AP enrollment and performance. More importantly, it is the proof that our students - across all subgroups - are eager and ready for the challenges of rigorous classroom experiences.”

More than 1,350 students in the division were designated as 2016 AP Scholars for earning scores of 3 or higher on at least three AP exams and 68 VBCPS students were named National AP Scholars for earning an average score of 4 or higher on all AP exams they have taken and at least eight exams during their high school career.

VBCPS staff and administration have placed a priority on preparing students for AP courses. High school administrators and counselors review students’ performance on the PSAT to identify AP potential in subject areas and then work collaboratively with students to develop schedules that allow them to enroll in these courses.

Additionally, Virginia Beach is one of just five school divisions in the nation currently piloting an AP readiness program to help underclassmen prepare for future AP English and math coursework.

This AP data is the latest in a series of academic indicators demonstrating growth and increased student achievement in Virginia Beach schools. Earlier this fall, the division reported its best SAT scores since 2008, record On-Time Graduation and dropout rates, and an increase in the number of schools earning full state accreditation.

For more information about these achievements or to review additional school data, visit vbschools.com.

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Department of Media and Communications, vbcpsweb@vbschools.com

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