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  Comments (2) Total Wednesday Apr. 23, 2014
More Montana Students Taking Advanced Classes
Advanced Placement
BOZEMAN – A record 16.6 percent of Montana high school seniors took college-level Advanced Placement classes in 2009, according to a report.

The College Board said earlier this month that the number is up from 13.1 percent five years but still below the national average of 26.5 percent.

The Montana Office of Public Instruction said seven school districts ranked among the top in the state with the highest percentage of graduating students in the advanced programs. Those districts are Bozeman, Gardiner, Stevensville, Three Forks, Roy, Whitefish and Baker.

The classes are considered one of the best ways to prepare students for college and can also reduce costs by making students eligible for college class credits.

"The gains that Montana students have made in terms of AP participation and success is another sign of our state's commitment to preparing students for college and careers," said Denise Juneau, Montana superintendent of public instruction.

The report said 1,661 Montana students from the graduating class of 2009 took at least one AP exam, up from 1,630 in 2008.

"In general, I think it encourages more (students) to go on to college," said Rob Watson, principal at Bozeman High School. "They have some success already ... before they've left high school."

Last year, 457 students took at least one AP exam at the school, up from 449 the year before.

Karen Nebel, a counselor at Stevensville High School, has been working with the district's advanced placement program since it began in 2003 with 31 students. She said the growth in the program is partly due to the school's teachers but also to students deciding to challenge themselves.

"I think they look at it as very prestigious and an honor, and they like the challenge," she said. "Those kids will take a class and they may not get an A, but it's more of a challenge. They get to interact, there's a lot more discussion; that's what I see with the kids. They really enjoy that."
On 02-21-10, Craig moore commented....
Rhetoric aside, here’s how Montana schools are really doing:  http://opi.mt.gov/Reports&Data;/index.html#gpm1_9 There are several report features here.
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