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AP Test Participation, Passing Rate Up In DCPS

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About a third of DCPS students who take Advanced Placement exams pass.
About a third of DCPS students who take Advanced Placement exams pass.

More D.C. Public School students took the Advanced Placement or AP exams last year than in years past, but less than a third are passing the test.

Almost 2,300 DCPS students took the exam — up 15 percent from the year before. There was a 6 percent increase nationwide.

Chancellor Kaya Henderson attributes the increase to a decision last year that required all high schools to offer at least four AP courses, so all students in DCPS have access to college-level work. Also, she says teachers have worked to recruit traditionally underrepresented students to these courses.

Of those taking the exams, only 29 percent of students passed, attaining a score of 3 or better. And there are large gaps between students passing the exam based on race.

For example, almost 80 percent of white students passed an AP exam, whereas 30 percent of Hispanic students passed, and 14 percent of African-American students passed.


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