Each year students around the country participate in Advanced Placement (AP) course work that culminates in a nearly three hour exam for college credit. These exams are accepted at most universities around the country and lead to increased scholarship money as well as improved college acceptance and completion rates. Students at Milford High School (MHS) enjoy one of the highest pass rates in Delaware, over 63 percent, compared to a national average around 50 percent. This means that students enrolled in AP courses at MHS earn more qualifying scores, 3 or higher, than their peers at other schools around the nation.
“Participation [in Advanced Placement courses] is one of the main measures that US News and World Report uses for their Top High Schools list,” said MHS Vice Principal Shawn Snyder. “It also means that our students have access to world class curriculum and resources. This is an international standard accepted in over 30 countries and at almost every major university in the United States.”
Milford Senior High School offers AP Government and Politics, English Literature, English Composition, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics and Calculus. The Advanced Placement courses are set at a higher standard than regular eleventh and twelfth grade classes and prepare students for college and life after graduation. Advanced Placement students are able to take up to 3 classes as a Junior and 5 classes as a Senior. For their reward of receiving college credits for passing the AP exams, students in these classes give up many hours each day and some times other commitments such as social freedom and playing sports.
Mr. Snyder points to dozens of studies that indicate that there is a positive correlation between AP course work and college completion rates. Students who have exposure to this level of content often outperform those who have not and “while there is some dispute about the amount of increased success, most scholars agree that there is about a 25 percent increase in a student’s college completion rate over those who were never exposed to AP coursework.” The pervasive characteristics that seem to be present among the AP students at Milford High are the drive to learn and the ability to hold themselves accountable for the level of work they put into the program. Just as college students are challenged to take responsibility for their studies, these students are learning accountability at an early age.
With that in mind, Milford High School administration has made it a priority to expose as many students to AP curriculums as possible. This year at MHS, a record number of students participated in AP courses. Milford High School offers 13 AP courses, making it one of the most comprehensive AP programs in all of Delaware. This year’s 175 students completed 333 exams in 13 separate courses for a potential 1276 college credits, all of which is a record for Milford High School students.
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