Howard High Celebrates AP Success | Best Of
Howard High School students who received qualifying scores on math, science, and English Advanced Placement exams in spring 2013 received checks rewarding their success during an Awards Celebration on Tuesday, October 1.
"This award recognition program is about you. We want you to know how proud we are of your hard work - it's what has gotten you to this point," said Howard High School Principal Matt Adams.
Howard High School received a three-year National Math and Science Initiative (NMS) grant in spring 2011. It was part of First Lady Michelle Obama's Initiative for Military Families, and Howard High was the only school in Georgia to receive the grant at the time. The initiative's mission is to provide consistent, high-level math and science education in high schools serving military bases in the United States. The program brings college-level math, science, and English courses to students through Advanced Placement (AP) curriculum.
Through the grant, AP teachers are sent to training to learn strategies to enable their students to earn a 3 or better on their AP exams. NMS also pays for presenters to fly in from around the country to work with students in each content area to help students understand the materials that are tested by the AP exams. Teachers must also offer additional tutoring time each month, and students are administered mock exams in each course.
Students who earn a 3 or higher on an AP exam receive a $100 stipend per test. Teachers of these students also receive $100 per student and an additional $1,000 if the teacher meets his or her goal set by NMS.
Howard High School has seen tremendous growth in its AP program since the inception of the NMS grant in fall 2011. The total numbers of qualifying scores in NMS subjects has steadily risen from 34 qualifying scores in 2010-2011 to 133 in 2012-2013. Participation in AP math, science and English classes has seen a 162 percent increase.
"Before this program began, Howard High School was below the state and national average with 79.4 per 1,000 juniors and seniors receiving a qualifying score in math, science and English," Dale Fleury, Senior Regional Director with NMS, told students at the celebration. "What has happened is dramatic. In two years, you guys have surpassed - almost doubled - the national and state average. We're now sitting at 263 students per 1,000 juniors and seniors enrolled who are receiving qualifying scores."
"The numbers are phenomenal because you guys have bought into this program, and because you've worked so hard we have been able to expand into other parts of the state," Mr. Fleury said. "You guys were the first school in the state of Georgia to implement this program. We are now in seven high schools in the state of Georgia because of what you have accomplished."
Parent Monica Smith said she was thrilled with the program, which has allowed son Jeremiah, a senior at Howard, to enroll in 12 AP courses.
"He has both been inspired and motivated from the Saturday sessions where the NMS tutors come in and work with the students and faculty here. He also, as a result of this program with AP opportunities, was able to participate in the ICE Program at Georgia Tech to prepare him for AP Computer Science. That specific program changed his focus for college - it switched from engineering to computer science or computer engineering, so we've seen that this has definitely been a benefit to him," she said.
Recent Howard High graduate and valedictorian Timothy Lewis said his experience with AP courses at Howard helped make his transition to college life at Mercer University smoother than he expected.
"It has given me freedom with my course load and has allowed me to get involved in campus as much as I wanted, all without sacrificing the academics. College is all about learning, learning about yourself. Without a doubt, my experiences with NMS and AP classes at Howard has helped make my college experience everything I've wanted and more," he said.
Timothy was named an AP Scholar with Distinction for the year, which meant he received an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams.
Dr. E. Steven Smith, Interim Superintendent, also thanked teachers and administrators for their dedication to ensuring the success of the program.
"I want to commend the work of the teachers in leading these young people to aspire to higher heights in terms of academic achievement. Howard High School has distinguished not only themselves, but they've also distinguished the entire Bibb County School System today with the levels of academic achievement that have been reached."
The school's grant is supported by Northrop Grumman, which includes paying for the following: the stipends and all expenses of the teachers and presenters, printing of mock exams, funds to purchase equipment each year for the school, a stipend for the grant administrator in the school, and the award checks for the students.
Howard High School had 43 AP Scholars. In fact, 29 of those students earned the honor of being named an AP Scholar with an average of 2.81 on their AP exams, six were named AP Scholars with Honor with an average of 3.53 on their AP exams, and eight were named AP Scholars with Distinction with an average of 3.94 on their AP exams.
(Granted to students who receive scores of 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams)
Christopher Cannon (graduate)
Stephen Cook (graduate)
William Daughdrill (graduate)
Delaney Doolittle (graduate)
Daniel Eberlein (graduate)
Nathan Farmer (graduate)
Jennifer Harris (graduate)
Oliver Holt (graduate)
John Hudgins (graduate)
Corrie Jackson (graduate)
Elizabeth Johnson (graduate)
Sidney Jones (graduate)
Kevin Lee (graduate)
John MacNeil (graduate)
Ashley Mosier (graduate)
Thomas Seigle (graduate)
Katie Thompson (graduate)
Tristan Toland (graduate)
Kayli Varner (graduate)
Rebecca Wallace (graduate)
Ashraf Younis (graduate)
Rachel Zion (graduate)
AP Scholars with Honor
(Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams)
Sarah David (graduate)
Caroline Jones (graduate)
John Langstaff (graduate)
AP Scholars with Distinction
(Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams)
Joseph Hornung (graduate)
Timothy Lewis (graduate)
Obi Ndubuisi (graduate)
Luke Willis (graduate)