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NMSI Blog

Schools Eager to Challenge Students and See Results

Earlier this month, a $930,637 grant from The Heinz Endowments made it possible for two Pennsylvanian high schools – Brashear and Sci-Tech – to implement NMSI’s Comprehensive Advanced Placement (AP) Program. On how this grant will impact the schools, Eleanor Chute of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes, “Combined, 38 students at both schools earned a score of at least 3 – considered to be a qualifying score – on AP exams in 2011-12. Results for 2012-13 aren't in yet, but the goal is to have 124 such scores in 2013-14, reaching 149 by 2015-16.” Deanna Garcia of Pittsburgh’s NPR News Station WESA concurs by stating that “the ultimate goal [is] to ensure more kids…are prepared for higher education – whatever form that may take.”  Listen to the full radio interview here.
 
Echoing these sentiments in an interview with Elaine Effort of KQV Radio is the school district’s own Jaclyn Castma, project manager for the AP and the International Baccalaureate program. “Our main goal is to get our students crossing two stages,” she says passionately. “One being the stage at their high school graduation, but then ultimately a second stage during their college graduation.” And this is made possible with NMSI’s AP Program.
 
“One of the great things about the NMSI grant is that there really is [an] effort to build a culture around AP within the schools, and making sure that students are excited to come in and study,” says Castma. “We want to build this culture of college-going experience.” Listen to the full radio interview here.
 
Another grant of more than $838,600, funded by the Department of Defense Education Activity, is impacting Cumberland County schools in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Thanks to the grant, which will help expand NMSI’s AP program into more schools and strengthen those already participating, "we will break down barriers that keep students from challenging themselves," said Denise Garison, Principal of Jack Britt High School. "We will ensure that our teachers are well trained and are provided with cutting-edge resources to help raise the academic bar."