State Legislative Briefing Aims to Address Inequities in AP Courses for Massachusetts Students
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Event: Leveling the Field: Addressing Inequities in AP Courses in MA
Date: January 30, 2024
Time: 11:00 AM
Location: Massachusetts State House, Room 428
(401) 497- 4458
Advocates and experts join to discuss potential policy solutions that will bridge the existing gaps in access to advanced coursework in Massachusetts
BOSTON, MA – Students who take advanced courses in school tend to have better attendance, higher high school graduation rates, and often achieve greater economic success in their lifetimes. This is especially true in the case of Advanced Placement (AP) courses, which prepare students better for college and minimize financial costs by granting college credit. Massachusetts is a known national leader in AP performance and enrollment. However, Black and Latino students remain under-enrolled due to systemic factors such as resource inequities, educator bias, and racialized tracking. Additionally, Black and Latino students are disproportionately impacted by the inconsistency of institutions’ AP credit policies, making it harder for students to earn college credit. EdTrust-MA is hosting an event in collaboration with Mass Insight that aims to shed light on the current disparities in access to advanced coursework and highlight potential policy solutions to close these opportunity gaps.
The special briefing, “Leveling the Field: Addressing Inequities in AP Courses in MA,” will occur on January 30, 2024, at 11:00 AM ET in Room 428 at the Massachusetts State House. This event will serve as a platform to disseminate critical findings from a new research brief by EdTrust, titled “Increasing Access to Advanced Coursework in Massachusetts,” which examines the barriers many Black and Latino students and students from low-income backgrounds face in participating and excelling in advanced coursework.
“Advanced coursework offers students valuable learning opportunities to gain skills and exposure to rigorous curriculum that help set them up for postsecondary success, and we believe every high schooler should have equitable access to these types of opportunities,” says Jennie Williamson, state director for EdTrust-MA. “Our goal with this event is to facilitate an honest dialogue about the current inequities and how to dismantle the barriers that underserved students currently face in accessing and completing advanced coursework, like AP courses.”
The presentation will be followed by an insightful panel discussion featuring policy experts, practitioners, educators, and advocates in the field of education. The panel will explore potential policy solutions to close the existing gaps in access to advanced coursework. Additionally, the discussion will provide an overview of current bills progressing through the state legislature aimed at addressing these issues.
“As we advocate for policies and funding to expand access to Advanced Placement courses, particularly for underserved students, we must push institutions to be more consistent about how they award college credit. A change in statewide policy would help ensure that institutions are transparent and consistent in how they accept AP scores so that students can make more informed college choices,” says John Schneider, managing director of advocacy & public affairs at Mass Insight.
Members of the media, educators, policymakers, and community members are invited to attend this event, engage in the conversation, and contribute to the ongoing dialogue on advancing education equity in Massachusetts.
About EdTrust: EdTrust is committed to advancing policies and practices to dismantle the racial and economic barriers embedded in the American education system. Through our research and advocacy, EdTrust improves equity in education from preschool through college, engages diverse communities dedicated to educational equity and justice, and increases political and public will to build an education system where students will thrive.
About Mass Insight: Mass Insight partners with states, districts, schools, and communities to implement customized strategies and build capacity to advance equity and opportunity in K-12 education so that all students, particularly those who have been systemically marginalized, are prepared to achieve their academic and personal potential. Learn more at massinsight.org.