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Jesuit Excels in AP Testing

Jesuit Excels in AP Testing

Jesuit High School's Advanced Placement (AP program) capped off another year of growth and development with superior test results in 2016-17.

Twelve Jesuit AP courses exceeded an 86% pass rate on AP exams taken in May. With an overall average pass rate of 76%, Jesuit now has surpassed the 76% mark for four consecutive years while continuing to expand AP course offerings and the total number of students taking AP classes and exams.

The data reveals the impressive gains:

  • 746 AP exams taken by Jesuit students in 2017, a 74% increase over 2014 (429).
  • 362 students enrolled in AP courses in 2017, a 62% increase over 2014 (224), and nearly triple 2009 (125).
  • 21 AP courses offered in 2017, a 50% increase over 2014 (14).
  • Six AP courses produced a perfect 100% pass rate in 2017: Art 2-D (teacher Kevin Ball '03), Art Drawing (Ball), Calculus BC (Corey Perich), Biology (Amy Martin), Seminar (Austin Freeman '02), and Computer Science (Jesuit Virtual Learning Academy).
  • 301 of the 362 Jesuit students (83.1%) who took an AP test this year earned a passing score of 3 or better, far above the global (60.3%) and state (54.6%) averages.

This was the second straight year that both Art classes and Calculus BC achieved perfect pass rates. AP Seminar, which is the first year of the two-year AP Capstone program that launched at Jesuit in 2016-17, achieved a perfect pass rate in its debut year.

Several others fared extremely well. Human Geography, taught by Vindri Gajadhar, had a 97% pass rate, marking the third straight year Jesuit's lone AP course for freshmen exceeded 97%. Statistics, taught by April Bombka, had a 94% pass rate, its third consecutive year at 94% or better.

Psychology (Bill Eggert '77) had a 90% pass rate, giving Jesuit nine AP courses with a 90% rate or better. English Language (Greg Malafronte '05) 88%, World History (Sam Mandt '93) 87%, and Spanish Language 86% (Juan Cruz) also had very high pass rates.

“The AP scores are a reflection of the commitment of our teachers and students to academic excellence,” said Debbie Pacheco, Jesuit’s assistant principal for academics. “I am so proud of their hard work and dedication. Once again, our students showed a high level of performance as the accessibility of our AP courses has increased significantly.”

In 2017-18, Jesuit has added two more AP courses - the AP Research component of AP Capstone, and Computer Science Principles - and now offers 23. Jesuit’s AP test protocol maintains the integrity of the school’s pass-rate data, since all enrolled AP students at Jesuit must take the AP exam in that course. (Some schools allow students in AP courses to opt out of the AP test.) Click here for more information about Jesuit's AP and Honors courses.

In AP testing, scores are reported on a 5-point scale, with a score of 3 or better considered passing. Most colleges and universities grant credit and placement for scores of 3, 4, or 5.

5 = extremely well qualified
4 = well qualified
3 = qualified
2 = possibly qualified
1 = no recommendation

"Qualified" means the test taker is capable of doing the work of an introductory-level course in a particular subject at college.

The Advanced Placement program, created by the College Board, offers college-level curricula and examinations to high school students. The AP curriculum for each of the various subjects is created for the College Board by a panel of experts and college-level educators in that field of study.

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