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West students learn about potential for AP success

posted Mar 6, 2014, 3:12 PM by Communications Coordinator   [ updated Mar 6, 2014, 3:20 PM ]
Students at Manchester High School West gathered this morning to learn about the school’s Advanced Placement (AP) program and the opportunities that exist for their academic success. The 110 students from all four grades were invited to the breakfast event based on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT) “AP Potential” tool that helps schools identify students who are likely to succeed in rigorous AP courses and exams.

“We are thrilled with the fact that this number of students, all of whom have not enrolled in AP courses before, are eager to learn more about the courses and embrace the challenge they present,” said West principal Chris Motika. “The AP Potential is a valuable tool, and I am willing to bet that if all of our sophomores took the PSAT, we would have even more students seated here today.” 

The message for the morning was one of support, confidence and high expectations for learning. College Board senior education manager Dena Johnson was in attendance to tell students about how the AP Potential feature works to ensure that no student with the potential to succeed in AP classes is overlooked, and help schools make determinations about which AP courses to offer.

The AP Potential breakfast was timely as the Manchester School District begins the course selection process for the high schools in the next few days, and Manchester West typically sees lower enrollment in its AP classes compared to Central and Memorial. The short list of five AP classes -- while Memorial offers 10, and Central nine -- has been identified as one of the issues affecting enrollment because students are limited on choice. Over the next three years, however, the school district will be adding AP courses to all three high schools to ensure equity and access for all students regardless of where they attend.

“Every student should have the opportunity to experience the rigor and richness of an Advanced Placement course,” said assistant superintendent David Ryan. “No matter the academic demand of a course, it is up to us as professional educators to ensure the supports are in place to lift all students up to meet the same high expectations.”