Joliet Township High School District 204 Named a College Board Advanced Placement® District of the Year


Joliet Township High School District 204 in Illinois has been named a College Board Advanced Placement® District of the Year
being the national leader among small-sized school districts — defined as having fewer than 8,000 students — in expanding access to Advanced Placement Program ® (AP®) courses while simultaneously improving AP Exam performance. Joliet Township High School District 204’s students, teachers, district and school administrators, and College Board leadership celebrated these achievements with an event at Joliet West High School on Wednesday, February 8th.

Joliet Township High School District 204 was one of 433 school districts across the U.S. and Canada that achieved placement on the annual AP District Honor Roll. From this list, three AP Districts of the Year — one for each category of district population size: small, medium, and large — were selected based on an analysis of three academic years of AP data.

“I am proud of our students and staff who have worked so hard to earn this national award,” said Dr. Cheryl McCarthy, Joliet Township High School Superintendent.  “This is a perfect example of how our Strategic Plan has continually pushed us to limits we did not even think were possible.”

“This award shows that Joliet Township High School District 204 is challenging many students to achieve at the highest levels,” said Trevor Packer, head of the College Board’s AP Program. “The teachers and administrators in this district are clearly committed to ensuring that a more diverse population of students attains the benefits of AP—that they gain confidence, learn how to craft and defend arguments, earn college credit, and are ready to succeed in college. Congratulations to all the educators, parents, and students whose dedication and hard work are behind this well-deserved recognition.”

From 2014 to 2016, Joliet Township High School District 204:

  • Simultaneously and continuously increased the number of students taking AP classes while improving successful outcomes (a score of 3 or higher) on AP Exams, with 39 percent of all AP students scoring a 3 or higher in 2016;
  • Increased student participation in AP by 16 percent annually and the percentage of students scoring a 3 or higher on at least one AP Exam by 4 percent annually; and
  • Increased the percentage of traditionally underrepresented minority AP students earning a 3 or higher on at least one AP Exam by 7 percent annually — an increase of 83 students since 2014. (55 percent or more of the AP students at Joliet Township High School District 204 is American Indian, African American, Hispanic/Latino or Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander. In addition, 42 percent or more of the AP students in the district qualify for free or reduced-price lunch.)       

Increasing access to AP course work while simultaneously increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher is the ideal scenario for a district’s AP program, indicating that the district is successfully preparing a larger array of its students for the rigor of AP and college studies. Participating in AP course work can also lead to college savings for families because the typical student who scores a 3 or higher on two AP Exams has the potential to save, on average, $1,779 at a public four-year college and over $6,000 at a private institution.

In addition to celebratory events at the district level, all three winning districts will be honored in Washington, DC during the 2017 AP Annual Conference in July.

In 2016, more than 3,900 colleges and universities around the world received AP scores for college credit, advanced placement, and/or consideration in the admission process, with many colleges and universities in the U.S. offering credit in one or more subjects for qualifying AP scores.

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