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Oregon offers free Advanced Placement test prep

By KTVZ.COM news sources
Published On: Jan 30 2013 03:46:28 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 24 2013 08:04:30 PM CST
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SALEM, Ore. -

Deputy Superintendent Rob Saxton and Apex Learning® announced Thursday a new partnership that will provide Oregon public high school students with access to online Advanced Placement* test preparation at no cost to the school or student.

Starting this winter, Oregon students will have access to a range of tools and resources to help them better prepare to take, and succeed in, their AP exams.

This initiative is tied to Governor Kitzhaber’s education reform efforts and the urgent need to ensure all students are prepared for college and career in order to meet our state’s 40-40-20 goal.

"I am committed to investing in kids and in schools so that Oregon students have the resources they need to succeed in a 21st century economy," said Governor Kitzhaber. "Programs that give high school students the opportunity to accrue college credit are key to making post-secondary education more accessible and affordable, and are critical to achieving our overall education goals."

During the 2011-12 school year, over 14,000 Oregon public school students took more than 22,000 AP exams.  This is a 28% increase in the number of students taking AP exams over the past five years. 

However, just over half of these exams received a score of 3 or higher (the score generally associated with receiving college credit). 

Starting this school year, students enrolled in AP courses will have access to Apex Learning online AP Exam Review, including access to an online AP exam review teacher, to increase their chances of receiving college credit for their advanced coursework. Apex Learning is a leading provider of blended and virtual learning solutions to the nation's schools.

“This partnership provides one more tool to help prepare students for success in college,” said Deputy Superintendent Rob Saxton. “We know that when students take rigorous, college-level coursework while in high school, do well on the exams, and graduate with college credits already under their belts, they are more likely to go to, succeed in, and graduate from college. As a state, we are committed to increasing graduation rates and college-going rates and that work starts with ensuring our students have the tools they need to succeed.”

Apex Learning and the Oregon Department of Education have entered into a statewide agreement to offer online AP exam review in 12 subject areas to up to 15,000 Oregon students. Students can take advantage of the exam prep resources for as many of these subjects as they wish at no cost.

The costs, and management of the partnership, are being provided by the Oregon Virtual School District, an online teaching and learning resource for Oregon schools and districts funded by the state Legislature and managed by the Oregon Department of Education. 

This online resource does not take the place of outstanding classroom teachers or rigorous instruction.  However, it adds an additional tool to resource-strapped school districts looking to help more students prepare for college. 

This partnership fits seamlessly with other tools already available for Oregon schools and districts to help encourage participation in rigorous, college-level courses. All sophomores in Oregon public schools have the opportunity to take the PSAT free of charge.

Using PSAT results, schools are able to use a tool call AP Potential, provided by the College Board, to identify which AP courses students are likely to do well in.  Now with the Apex Learning AP exam review, students can receive additional support in preparing for success on these course exams. 

Combined, these resources can help increase the number of students taking, succeeding in, and receiving college credit for, AP coursework.  This will ultimately reduce the cost of college for our students and families and put students on the path to college success and completion.

About Apex Learning

Founded in 1997, Apex Learning is the leading provider of blended and virtual learning solutions to the nation's schools. The company’s standards-based digital curriculum in math, science, English, social studies, world languages, and Advanced Placement   is widely used for original credit, credit recovery, remediation, intervention, acceleration, and exam preparation. Multiple course pathways help teachers successfully engage all students in rigorous course work that prepares them for college and work. During the 2011–2012 school year, Apex Learning served 395,000 students with more than 1.35 million course enrollments. Apex Learning, headquartered in Seattle, is accredited by the Northwest Accreditation Commission, an accreditation division of AdvancED, and approved for National Collegiate Athletic Association eligibility.

About the Oregon Virtual School District

Through the Oregon Department of Education, the Oregon Virtual School District (OVSD) provides online teaching and learning tools to Oregon school districts.  Interested school districts can gain access through OVSD to virtual learning content and Cloud Applications for blended classroom instruction and distance learning. OVSD serves over 250,000 students and teachers through Google Applications for Education and student learning applications hosted by Oregon State University’s Open Source Lab. OVSD also ensures that Oregon teachers receive professional development, training, and support in using these tools to enhance classroom instruction. 

For more information on how to register to use this new resource, go to: http://oregonk-12.net/.

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