Commonwealth Journal

Local News

October 4, 2012

Excelling at SWHS and PCHS

(Continued)

Somerset —

Enrollment in AP courses is up by around 80 students at each school, setting records at both.
Angela Murphy, Secondary Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction for the county school district, said that after Pulaski County decided to join the AdvanceKentucky program along with a number of other schools a couple of years ago, they also decided to raise the bar. AdvanceKentucky funds three content areas: math, science and English.
“Our district decided we would fund Social Studies, Psychology, Foreign Language, and Music also,” said Murphy. “So part of the money came from AdvanceKentucky and part from the district.”
As such, Pulaski County Schools chipped in $9,300 to SWHS and $2,900 to PCHS for those students who scored high on the extra subjects, showing a clear investment in their students future on the school system’s part.
“I couldn’t be prouder of the students and the teachers who have helped them get (to this point),” said Superintendent Steve Butcher, who noted that he was at SWHS to personally help hand out 72 checks. “The students have worked hard ... and earned the money to help pay for college.”
Indeed, Murphy said that many of the students she talked to on Wednesday said they would put a portion of their money in savings for the next level of education.
“They do it see (the money) as an incentive to perform (in school), but this is just a small incentive,” said Murphy, noting the advantage gained by colleges accepting AP tests in lieu of basic freshman year courses.
“They’ll waive general education courses; many of our students go in to college as sophomores,” said Murphy. “(At the University of Kentucky), waiving two semesters of tuition, that’s $14,000.
“The other part is that the curriculum has to be approved be a college board; it’s very rigorous and college-like,” she added. “So the rigor prepares students for their college courses. The money’s a part of it, but if you think of the savings in tuition and then the preparation for college, it’s tri-fold in advantages for students.”

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