High School-Level STEM Initiatives: State Support for pre-AP Alignment Programs
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High School-Level STEM Initiatives: State Support for pre-AP Alignment Programs

Why does it matter?
  • Students who have worked their way through quality pre-AP programs are more likely to succeed once they reach high school and enroll in AP courses.
  • Teachers who have been provided with preparation in teaching pre-AP programs are more likely to provide an effective teaching environment for their students.
  • Proper alignment among the different levels of education helps ensure that students' expectations are realistic and their preparation adequate.
  • Districts - especially those with high concentrations of low-income students - may not have the resources necessary to implement quality pre-AP programs.

  • Highlights

    Policies in 13 states provide for the support of pre-AP programs.

    Listed policies do not include those supported by federal funds through the Advanced Placement Incentives Program, unless state legislation or regulation specifically directs that these funds be used in the support of pre-AP alignment programs.

    Sources for all data points are accessible through this link.

    Methodology: This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations, and state education agency Web sites, and will be updated as new policies and programs are enacted.

    Last updated: June 2008

    This database was compiled by Kyle Zinth, policy analyst, ECS Information Clearinghouse. For questions, additions or corrections: 303.299.3689 or jdounay@ecs.org.




    State support for pre-AP alignment programs
    Alabama Yes, funds received from the National Governors Association (NGA) are being used to increase AP offerings and quality in targeted low-income and high minority schools. The NGA strategy includes preparing students in the middle grades for AP rigor. "The state has identified one urban district, one rural district, and six of their high schools to participate in this effort to expand AP participation. ... will choose an external evaluation firm to assess the progress of the pilot districts and schools and integrate AP expansion into the Alabama High School Redesign Strategic Plan."
    Alaska None identified
    Arizona None identified
    Arkansas Yes, all districts must offer pre-AP courses by the 2008-09 school year. Pre-AP courses must be aligned with required high school AP offerings in four core subject areas that include mathematics and science.
    California None identified
    Colorado None identified
    Connecticut None identified
    Delaware None identified
    District of Columbia None identified
    Florida None identified
    Georgia Yes, funds received from the National Governors Association (NGA) are being used to increase AP offerings and quality in targeted low-income/high minority schools. The NGA strategy includes expanding AP courses, AP professional development for teachers, administrators and counselors, preparing students in the middle grades for AP rigor and using the PSAT to measure AP potential.
    Hawaii None identified
    Idaho None identified
    Illinois Yes, 2005 legislation directed the state board to seek federal funding through the AP Incentive Program and the Math-Science Partnership Program and use it to support Pre-AP teacher professional development and to support the implementation of an integrated instructional program for 6th-12th grades in mathematics that  prepares all students for enrollment and success in AP courses and in college. Additionally, the state board was directed to encourage school districts to offer rigorous courses in 6th-11th grades that prepare students for the demands of AP course work.
    Indiana 2007 legislation lays out conditions by which middle and junior high school teachers may receive stipends to cover expenses related to a summer training institute for pre-AP education, to include professional development resources and services. This legislation expands support which previously existed at the high school level.

    Stipend-eligible instruction must:
  • Provide teachers who instruct pre-AP courses with the necessary content knowledge and instructional skills to prepare students for success in AP courses, exams and other advanced courses.
  • Provide teachers with AP vertical team training and other pre-AP professional development that prepares students for success in AP.
  • Support the implementation of an instructional program for students in 6th-12th grades that provides an integrated set of instructional materials, diagnostic assessments and teacher professional development in mathematics that prepares all students for enrollment and success in AP courses in college.

  • The department of education is directed to develop and disseminate to each public middle and junior high school curriculum guidelines designed to satisfy the requirements of this policy. The department of education is authorized to seek implementation funding through the federal Advanced Placement Incentive and Math-Science Partnership programs.
    Iowa None identified
    Kansas None identified
    Kentucky Yes, funds received from the National Governors Association (NGA) are being used to increase AP offerings and quality in targeted low-income/high minority schools. The NGA strategy includes expanding AP courses; AP professional development for teachers, administrators and counselors; preparing students in the middle grades for AP rigor, and using the PSAT to measure AP potential. Activities are being conducted in one urban and one rural district, in three high schools in each district.
    Louisiana None identified
    Maine Yes, funds from the National Governors Association are being used to prepare students in the middle grades for AP rigor.
    Maryland None identified
    Massachusetts None identified
    Michigan None identified
    Minnesota Yes, state has established a grant program that provides support to increase student participation in pre-Advanced Placement programs. Funds are provided to eligible local school boards to create or expand pre-Advanced Placement initiatives.

    Mississippi Yes, the state requires that each district offer at least one AP course in the four core areas, including mathematics and science. Districts also are also required to offer pre-AP courses to prepare students for AP course work. The department of education is directed to seek federal funding through the Advanced Placement Incentive Grant Program and other available funding to implement these requirements. Funding efforts must be focused with an intent to carry out AP and pre-AP activities in districts targeted as serving a high concentration of low-income students.
    Missouri None identified
    Montana None identified
    Nebraska None identified
    Nevada None identified
    New Hampshire No
    New Jersey None identified
    New Mexico Yes, state policy authorizes districts and charter schools to create core curriculum frameworks in K-6th grades to prepare students for pre-AP and AP offerings in 7th-12th grades.

    The framework must include:
    • A curriculum that is aligned with state academic content and performance standards that is challenging, specific as to content and sequential from grade to grade, similar to a core curriculum sequence.
    • In-depth professional development for teachers that includes vertical teaming in content areas.
    • Content, materials and instructional strategies or methodologies that current research demonstrates are likely to lead to improved student achievement in pre-AP and AP courses in 7th-12th grades.
    A district or charter school may apply for a grant from the public education department to support a core curriculum framework.

    Additionally,
    in accordance with the rules of the department and after consulting with the Indian education advisory council and determining the resources available within the department, the assistant secretary of education is responsible for developing or select for implementation a challenging, sequential, culturally relevant curriculum to provide instruction to tribal students in pre-kindergarten-6th grade to prepare them for pre-AP and AP coursework in 7th-12th grades.
    New York None identified
    North Carolina None identified
    North Dakota None identified
    Ohio None identified
    Oklahoma Yes. The state board is authorized to award funds for schools to develop AP vertical teams. Statute defines a vertical team as "a group of middle school or junior high school and high school educators in a given discipline who work cooperatively to develop and implement a vertically aligned program aimed at helping students acquire the academic skills necessary for success in the advanced placement program[.]" A vertical team must "include at least one representative from each grade level in the content area" grades 7-12.

    The state board is also authorized to award schools funds to subsidize training for pre-AP teachers.

    Oregon None identified
    Pennsylvania None identified
    Rhode Island None identified
    South Carolina None identified
    South Dakota None identified
    Tennessee None identified
    Texas Yes, the Lighthouse Initiative for Texas Classrooms provides online tools to help teachers connect the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills and pre-AP and AP curricular objectives, to prepare students for AP-level coursework at the high school level.
    Utah None identified
    Vermont None identified
    Virginia None identified
    Washington None identified
    West Virginia None identified
    Wisconsin Funds received from the National Governors Association (NGA) are being used to increase AP offerings and quality in targeted low-income/high minority/rural schools. The NGA strategy includes expanding AP courses; AP professional development for teachers, administrators and counselors; preparing students in the middle grades for AP rigor, and using the PSAT to measure AP potential.
    Wyoming None identified

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