Thanks to their own hard work and that of their teachers, more Connecticut students took an Advanced Placement (AP) exam this year, raising their scores, and narrowing the achievement gap. According to the State Department of Education, more students (4.1 percent) took an AP exam in 2014 than in 2013 and more (3.8 percent) received a score of 3 or higher.
Black and Hispanic students showed particularly large increases in participation. The number of black students taking the exam increased by 17.3 percent with nearly a quarter more receiving a score of 3 or higher. Hispanic students’ participation rose by 13.7% with 17% receiving a score of 3 or higher.
This year the State Department of Education (SDE) covered the cost of AP fees for low-income Connecticut students whose fees were not paid by the College Board and the U.S. Department of Education. The SDE hopes to continue this financial support in future years if funding is maintained.
SAT scores were more mixed. Mirroring national trends, Connecticut’s SAT scores in 2014 remained flat in reading, with slight dips in math (-3 points) and writing (-4 points) compared with 2013.
Approximately 86% of graduating high school seniors took the exam, required by many colleges. Compared with the graduating class of 2013, the number of black students taking the exam increased by 3.6 percent and Hispanic students’ participation rose by 6.8 percent.