Southampton among five Virginia school divisions named to Advanced Placement Honor Roll

Published 10:22 am Friday, February 10, 2017

Five Virginia school divisions — Southampton County, Loudoun County, Middlesex County, Rockbridge County and Rockingham County — earned spots on the 7th Annual AP District Honor Roll, which was announced on Wednesday by the College Board, the nonprofit organization that administers the Advanced Placement program.

The honor roll recognizes school districts for expanding participation in AP courses while maintaining or increasing the number of students earning scores of three or higher on AP tests. AP scores of three or higher are generally accepted as proof of college-level achievement.

“I congratulate the superintendents, principals and teachers in these five divisions for their commitment to challenging all students — regardless of background — and for their success in preparing students for these rigorous courses and assessments,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Steven R. Staples said.

Dr. Gwendolyn Shannon, superintendent of Southampton County Public Schools, said, “Our recognition is a testament to the hard work and dedication of Mrs. Allene Atkinson, principal, our students and our amazing staff. They continuously encourage our students to not only participate in more challenging classes, but to also excel in those classes. I am extremely proud of all of our Advanced Placement students and their commitment to excellence and their futures.”

Loudoun County, Rockbridge County and Rockingham County each previously made the AP Honor Roll: Loudoun County in 2011, Rockbridge County in 2012, and Rockingham County in 2012 and 2013.

Inclusion on this year’s honor roll is based on AP data from 2013-2014, 2014-2015 and 2015-2016. To earn a place on the honor roll, school districts must:

• Increase participation in AP courses by at least four percent in large districts, at least six percent in medium districts, and at least 11 percent in small districts;

• Increase or maintain the percentage of exams taken by black, Hispanic and other historically under-represented minority students; and

• Increase or maintain the percentage of students scoring a three or higher on at least one AP exam, unless 70 percent of the district’s AP students are already earning at least one qualifying score.

All told, 433 school districts in the U.S. and Canada earned places on the 7th Annual AP District Honor Roll.

In February, the College Board recognized Virginia as having the nation’s sixth-highest percentage of public high school seniors qualifying for college credit on AP examinations.