DeISD Advanced Placement Experiences Growth

DeSoto ISD Advanced Placement Program Experiences Exponential Growth and Student Achievement
Posted on 11/23/2021
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DeSoto ISD celebrates the valuable contributions of its DeSoto High School Advanced Placement department, teachers, and the achievement of its students enrolled in the AP programs. This school year, the DeSoto ISD AP program is celebrating several areas of growth and exceptional student achievement. 

This enhanced engagement in this college and career readiness program personifies the portion of the district’s vision of inspiring curiosity, developing character, and building courage within our students. The advanced placement program offers students the opportunity to learn at a higher level while still in high school and build their capacity to achieve future success in their college and career endeavors.

According to College Board, which oversees the advanced placement programs in schools, AP classes also help students to learn essential time management and study skills for achieving college and career success. In turn, students also gain more in-depth knowledge and understanding of subjects that interest them in addition to learning to tap their creativity and their problem-solving skills to address course challenges.

DeSoto ISD AP Literature and Composition teacher Vinita L. McMurray spoke to the intensity of her AP class. 

“Advanced Placement classes sharpen students' writing skills, teach them how to think critically, and improve their problem-solving abilities. The coursework allows students the opportunity to learn to navigate the academic expectations they'll encounter in college courses and beyond,” said McMurray.  “This course is not easy, which is why I encourage students to take it. So often, students are unaware of their intellectual capabilities and it is my hope that students who take this course walk away with scholastic confidence they may not have had before allowing me to serve them.”

The rigor, concept, and skills gained by students who participate in the Advanced Placement program is also pivotal to the district reaching its progress measure for the Board goal of increasing the percentage of HS students who graduate college, career, and/or military ready from 36% in May 2019 to 62% by May 2025.

As of November 2021, The DeSoto High School Advanced Placement Program has experienced growth in the following areas:

Increase in overall number of student exams taken from 642 in 2020 to 804 2021
Increase in student college readiness scores from 90 in 2020 to 119 2021
Increase in qualifying scores for female students from 27 in 2020 to 32 2021
Increase in the number of exams taken by African American students from 260 in 2020 to 595 in 2021.
Increase in total AP enrollment from 418 students in 2020 to 775 in 2021. 

Four students in the AP program helped DeSoto ISD make history by students received qualifying scores for the first time in the following AP exam groups:

The 2D Art Design exam qualifiers increased from 0 students in 2020 to 2 students in  2021 which received scores of 3 and 5.

The AP Environmental science exam qualifiers increased from 0 in 2020 to 2 students in 2021 who received scores of 4 and 5.

Additionally, six students were recognized as National College Board Scholars who are now eligible to compete on a global stage for academic “full-ride” scholarships and funds to increase the likelihood of degree completion and a successful post-secondary future.

The advanced placement program is only one of the programs that DeSoto ISD has in place to support post-secondary readiness. Others include the award-winning Career and Technical Education program, Early College and OnRamps, and Dual Credit courses.