Cactus Shadows High School offers new College Board Pre-AP Program

Cave Creek Unified School District participates in a new Pre-AP program offering instructional resources preparing students for college.

CCUSD is among 1,000 schools worldwide selected to participate in the new Pre-AP Program next school year, according to a press release.

Pre-AP is designed to give all students the necessary foundation and skills for success in Advanced Placement and other college-level coursework. The College Board selected Cactus Shadows High School as a partner committed to college readiness for all students, the release said.

“We are so excited to be among three schools in Arizona to receive the honor of becoming a Pre-AP District. This is a wonderful opportunity for all of our students and teachers,” said Cactus Shadows Assistant Principal Laurie Umbarger in a prepared statement.

Participation in challenging coursework helps prepare students for success in high school and beyond, the release said. However, less than 50 percent of U.S. high school students are ready for college. And more than 300,000 high school students forgo taking AP courses and exams despite the potential to succeed.

Based on scores on an SAT Suite assessment and feedback from teachers interested in helping to shape a curriculum – preparing students before entering an AP class – the College Board has developed the Pre-AP Program, noted the release.

Pre-AP courses are open to all students. The Pre-AP Program objectives are to:

  • Increase the number of students who are able to access and complete college-level work—like AP—before leaving high school.
  • Improve the college readiness of all students.

Cactus Shadows will receive an official Pre-AP designation for each course. This designation signals consistent, high standards in focused courses that help build, strengthen, and reinforce students’ content knowledge and skills, according to the release.

Cactus Shadows teachers will be encouraged to share feedback to help shape the program in years to come with the partnership during the initial cohort experience. The eight new ninth grade courses provide teachers and students with instructional resources, classroom-based assessments to assist with learning and practice, the release noted.

“We applaud the educators and administrators in Cactus Shadows High School who have worked to clear a path for all of their students,” said Auditi Chakravarty, vice president of SpringBoard and Pre-AP Programs, in a prepared statement.

“They are fostering a culture in their schools and classrooms that allows all students to learn the foundational knowledge and skills they need to be successful.”

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