Is Advanced Placement Good For Everyone? A Discussion With Partisans And Doubters

Monday, December 9, 2019
Hoover Institution, Washington DC

The Hoover Institution hosted "Is Advanced Placement Good for Everyone? A Discussion with Partisans and Doubters" on Monday, December 9, 2019 from 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM EST.

Learning in the Fast Lane: The Past, Present, and Future of Advanced Placement (Princeton 2019), a new book by Chester Finn and Andrew Scanlan, tells the story of the Advanced Placement (AP) program, widely regarded as the gold standard for academic rigor in American high schools. AP is enormous today—22,000 participating schools, 3 million students a year taking 5 million exams—and embraced and praised by many, but not by all. Some elite private schools have turned against it while some educators and policymakers favor dual enrollment in its many forms as a better alternative for kids. Advanced Placement faces other challenges, too, including curricular culture wars, credit denial by prominent universities, and the difficulty of infusing its rigor into more schools.

Featured participants are:

  • Clara Haskell Botstein of the Bard Early College High Schools to explain the benefits of dual credit and early-college programs for high-school students.
  • Peter Gow of the Independent Curriculum Group and One Schoolhouse to explain why dozens of high-status prep schools are choosing not to offer AP-designated courses.
  • Trevor Packer, who heads Advanced Placement at the College Board, to explain today’s AP program, important recent changes and additions to it, and its merits going forward.
  • Jack Smith, superintendent of schools in Montgomery County MD, to offer a veteran practitioner’s perspective on how AP (and IB) function in a large, diverse school system and explain why that system is working to expand their reach.

Chester Finn moderated the conversation.

Participants

Clara Haskell Botstein, Associate Vice President of Bard Early Colleges

Peter Gow, Independent Curriculum Group Resource Director at One Schoolhouse

Trevor Packer, Senior Vice President and Director of Advanced Placement at the College Board

Jack Smith, Superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools

Moderator

Chester E. Finn, Jr., Distinguished Senior Fellow and President Emeritus, Thomas B. Fordham Institute and co-author of Learning in the Fast Lane


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