Student representatives from Mr. Jerry Knox and Mr. Stan Dodson’s Advanced Placement classes attended the AP day at the Capitol on Thursday, January 25 in Atlanta, Georgia. Junior Ms. Mary Beth Mallard enrolled in AP studio Art and junior Ms. Candace Allen, enrolled in AP Physics and AP Studio Art served as advocates for the AP program and promoted the rigorous course alignments, benefits beyond test scores, and were also given a platform to convey a personal story of application that AP has had in their life.
The students took a group picture with Governor Nathan Deal and then met individually with District 23 State Senator, Jesse Stone. During this one-on-one meeting the students spoke about their involvement in AP and highlighted the positive impact the course has had. Senator Stone had several questions regarding AP. Mr. Knox and Mr. Dodson provided insightful feedback and advocacy for the AP program during the meeting including; noting that the state need an equable system for accepting AP college board passing scores. Currently the colleges and universities in the Georgia school system are site based and evaluate scores independently, note accepting score of 3, 4, or 5s. The point was made that legislation needs promotion to mandate all schools accept the passing AP scores for all students. In part many students look outside the state for secondary education to have their scores transfer. In an attempt to remain relevant with MOWR the state needs to reevaluate the passing score system. Also the non-tangible aspects of the AP program were promoted, in particular the aspect of what AP offers to work ethic, goal attainment, risks free growth, and time management skills. The AP classes offer an opportunity to bridge the gap between leaving high school and going to collage by building rapport and maintaining a rigorous caseload that meets the pacing demands of college. This is an aspect not offered as a MOWR student and one that schools should still promote as means for student development. The meeting concluded with a group picture with Senator Jesse Stone. The group then sat in on Senate and House of Representatives legislative sessions.
Senator Stone invited the group to a joint senate and representative session on education where they heard from State Superintendent Richard Woods as he delivered the state of education and promoted the STEAM program highlighting the growth in the Arts.