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Hartselle High gets AP honor

Each year, the College Board releases its Advanced Placement Honor Roll list of school districts that simultaneously increased the number of students taking AP tests and the number of students achieving a passing score on the tests. This year, Hartselle City Schools was one of two school districts in Alabama to make the Honor Roll. Both of the districts participate in the A+ College Ready program.

The A+ College Ready program provides students with the tools, resources and support needed to boost AP participation and achievement. Since the program was implemented in 2008, participating schools have experienced dramatic increases in the number of students that take AP exams, earn qualifying scores and attend and succeed in college.

Hartselle City Schools enrolled in the A+ program at the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year. In the first year. Hartselle High School students posted 129 passing scores in math, science and English AP courses and received a pat on the back from Alabama Governor Robert Bentley and State Board of Education officials. That number of passing AP marks far exceeded any other school in the A+ grant unit.

In addition, the Governor presented the school with a $1,000 scholarship to be awarded to a deserving student taking AP level courses. Each student who scored three or more on an AP course test received college credit for that course as well as a $100 award. Teachers of AP courses were also awarded $100 for each student they taught who received a passing score.

Since the 2010-2011 school year, enrollment in AP courses at the high school has jumped from 99 to 355 students, an increase of almost 360 percent.

School principal Jeff Hyche attributes the program’s success to hard working, highly motivated students who are not afraid to take challenging college level courses and teachers who are willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to teach them.

HHS has achieved something truly remarkable. By opening the doors of its AP classrooms, it has increased the number of students who stand out in the competitive college admission process and qualify for college credit and placement.