State honors local AP schools

SUWANEE -- The State Department of Education announced Tuesday that all traditional high schools with the local district have been recognized as Advanced Placement Honors Schools.

Schools with students testing in at least two AP math and science courses were named AP STEM facilities. These included all 18 traditional high schools and one charter school, Gwinnett School of Math, Science and Technology.

Local schools also were named as AP Access and Support facilities, meaning 30 percent of AP test takers identified themselves as black and/or Hispanic and at least 30 percent of all AP exam takers scored a 3 or higher. These included Archer, Berkmar, Central, Dacula, Lanier, Norcross, Shiloh and South Gwinnett.

"We are proud to see the hard work of our students and teachers come to fruition," said Clay Hunter, principal of South Gwinnett High School.

Gwinnett School of Math, Science and Technology and Lanier High School were named as AP Challenge Schools, meaning the schools have an enrollment of 900 or fewer students testing in the four core areas of English, math, science and social studies.

Lanier High's recognition as an AP STEM School, an AP Access and Support School and an AP Challenge School is as a point of pride for Principal Kerensa Wing. The school opened in 2010.

"As we opened Lanier High, our stakeholders expected us to continue to offer the same level of rigor to which our students were accustomed," Wing said. "A commitment by the leadership team and our teacher leaders to provide high-level learning opportunities for Lanier High students was one of our non-negotiables as we set our course."

Schools with at least 20 percent of the student population taking AP exams and at least 50 percent of the AP exams scoring a 3 or higher were named AP Merit Schools.

AP STEM Achievement Schools were those with students testing in at least two AP Mathematics courses, two AP science courses and at least 40 percent of the exam scores on AP math and AP science exams earning scores of three or higher.

Those schools included Brookwood, Collins Hill, Dacula, Duluth, Grayson High, GSMST, Mill Creek, Mountain View, Norcross High, North Gwinnett, Parkview and Peachtree Ridge.

AP classes and exams are administered by the college board, which also administers the SAT college-entrance exam. Students who receive a 3, 4 or 5 on AP exams may receive college credit. The 2012 AP Honor Schools are named based on results form 2010-11 AP classes and exams.

Out of 367 schools which earned the honor from across the state, 19 of them serve Gwinnett high school students.