Feb 12, 2012 4:19 PM by KPAX/KAJ Media Center
HELENA- More students than ever are cracking the books and taking the Advanced Placement exams with the Missoula and Helena school districts also picking up some additional recognition.
Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction Denise Juneau says a record number of Montana students took th AP in 2011 according to a new report by the College Board. Montana's AP participation rate has increased by 22.3% from 2007 to 2011.
Juneauy says that 2,784 Montana students took Advanced Placement exams in 2011, up 4% from 2010. Additionally, 1,823 graduating seniors in the class of 2011 took at least one AP exam during high school compared to 1,216 in the class of 2001.
"The gains that Montana students have made in terms of AP participation and success is another sign of our state's commitment to preparing students for college and careers,'' Juneau said in a news release.
Helena Public Schools and Missoula County Public Schools are being recognized by the College Board's AP Honor Roll for their efforts to increase participation and exam performance for the past three years. Only 367 districts in the world have increased participation while improving performance.
The College Board also analyzes the results of Montana students who have taken the PSAT and how their scores predict potential success in AP courses. From that population, the College Board found at least 2,010 additional Montana students could be successful in AP courses.
"While we can celebrate the successes of increasing participation in AP courses, we need to continue to encourage more students to take advantage of AP courses in their schools and through the Montana Digital Academy," stated Juneau. "Thousands of Montana students are ready to take rigorous AP courses, and we need to take the next step by expanding AP opportunities for all students who are ready for the challenge."
Click here to view the 8th annual AP Report to the Nation.