Maryland and Virginia are getting some assistance from the federal government to help low-income students pay for taking take advanced placement tests, reports the Associated Press.
The money comes from more than $21 million in grants made across the country by the U.S. Department of Education. The program is aimed at encouraging low-income students to take advanced placement tests and get college credit.
More than $550,000 is headed to Maryland, nearly 190,000 to Virginia. Officials say the money was divvied up using state estimates of the numbers of tests that would be taken by eligible students in each jurisdiction.
U.S Secretary of Education Arne Duncan says advanced placement courses are an important element in creating a college-going culture in the nation's high schools.
He says they help students develop the study skills and habits, and critical reasoning, which prepare them for the transition into college.