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How to raise minority participation in Advanced Placement

My colleague Nelson Hernandez reports on the extraordinary progress Montgomery County has made raising both participation and success in college-level courses in high school. Black and Hispanic students in the county are also doing significantly better on AP tests than minority students in the rest of the state.

By Jay Mathews  | December 1, 2009; 4:03 PM ET
Categories:  Jay on the Web  | Tags:  Advanced Placement, Montgomery County  
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I'm not seeing exactly what Montgomery's trick is beyond 'making AP classes available.'

My guess is that the plentiful offering of the classes means kids in the middle tier of their classes are likely to know someone who has taken an AP class and they sign up too.

Posted by: RedBird27 | December 1, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

I didn't see any reporting as to why more minorities are taking AP exams and passing them. The article simply reports statistics of improving without the reasons for that.

Since so few students are graduating (less than 45%?), is AP playing any role in the graduation rates of minority students from college?

Posted by: ericpollock | December 2, 2009 2:26 AM | Report abuse

The idea of paying for grades has always scared me. But paying poor kids to take AP seems like a no-brainer. Too many kids are working 30+ hours a week for minimum wage when society should be investing in their brains.

Posted by: johnt4853 | December 2, 2009 11:05 AM | Report abuse

All kids are already paid to take AP classes--in the form of free college credit.

I accumulated 38 college credits before I ever set foot on a college campus. For those who are keeping score, that's roughly 1.25 years of free college.

Posted by: afsljafweljkjlfe | December 3, 2009 10:49 AM | Report abuse

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