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CPS expanding AP program to 6 more high schools

Chicago Public Schools sign at CPS head quarters.

Rich Hein/Sun-Times

Six high schools are being added to the list of Chicago Public Schools that offer the uniquely rigorous Advanced Placement Capstone program, bringing the total to 21 schools.

The schools being added:

• Back of the Yards College Preparatory High School
• CICS – ChicagoQuest High School
• Hubbard High School
• Kelly High School
• Lake View High School
• Mather High School

While most CPS high schools offer advanced placement college courses, completing the Capstone program and earning a Capstone ‘diploma’ is a uniquely rigorous challenge.

The program requires students to earn a score of three or higher in both AP Seminar and AP Research courses, and four additional AP exams.

Students who pass AP exams with a score of 3 or higher are eligible for college credit while still in high school

“AP Seminar and AP Research assessments go beyond exams to include academic papers, multimedia presentations, and defense of findings in order to prepare students for college and career success through the development of critical thinking, academic research, collaboration, presentation, and time management skills,” according to a news release issued by Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office.

Last year, 213 CPS students earned the AP Capstone Diploma – more than any other district in the nation, according to the mayor’s office.

On the whole, more than 24,000 CPS students took at least one AP exam during the 2017-2018 school year.

And, the mayor’s office points out, for the first time, more than 50 percent of those students scored a three or higher.

There are 165 high schools under the Chicago Public Schools banner. There are nearly 106,000 students spread among them.