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Southern York County schools honored by College Board

Jessica Schladebeck
505-5438/@JessDispatch

The Southern York County School District has been recognized for its students' high passing rate on advanced placement exams.

The College Board, which administers the exams, recognized the district as one of 425 schools across the country — 43 of which are from Pennsylvania — in its Sixth Annual Advanced Placement District Honor Roll.

The exams, which are the culmination of year-long, high-level courses in a variety of subjects, combines multiple choice questions with an open-ended section. Final scores are a weighted combination of both sections and are graded on a rubric from one to five. Most colleges and universities will accept a score of three — which suggests the student is qualified to handle an entry-level college course in the subject area — as course credit.

Schools are recognized and placed on the Honor Roll for increasing access to advanced placement course work, while also maintaining or increasing the percentage of students earning scores of three or greater on the AP exams.

During the 2014-15 school year, Susquehannock High School students participated in 371 exams and 84 percent of them scored a three or greater, according to a press release. Since 2012, the number of AP exams that students have taken in the district has increased by 52 percent, from 244 to 371 tests.

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Assistant Superintendent Robert Bryson said it has been one of district's goals to offer advanced placement courses and the opportunity to take these exams to as many students as possible.

“The devoted teachers and administrators in this district are delivering an undeniable benefit to their students – opportunity,” Trevor Packer, the College Board’s senior vice president of AP and Instruction, said in a press release. “When coupled with a student’s hard work, such opportunities can have myriad outcomes, whether building confidence, learning to craft effective arguments, earning credit for college, or persisting to graduate from college on time.”

This is the second year in a row Southern York County School District has earned a spot on the College Board's honor roll, and Dallastown Area, York Suburban and West Shore school districts also made their way back onto the list. Red Lion Area School District was recognized for the first time this year for its students achievements on the advanced placement exams.

Reach Jessica Schladebeck at jschladebeck@yorkdispatch.com.