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Amherst and South Hadley schools are named to College Board’s national AP honor roll

Two area school districts are among 46 statewide and 539 nationwide to earn spots on the College Board’s 2012 AP District Honor Roll.

Amherst Regional and South Hadley public schools made the third annual honor roll for expanding access to advanced placement courses and maintaining or improving the percentage of students with a passing score of 3 or higher.

Specifically, districts selected for the honor roll had to:

∎ Increase access to AP courses by at least 4 percent in large districts, 6 percent in medium districts and 11 percent in small districts.

∎ Keep the percentage of nonwhite students taking AP exams from dropping by more than 5 percent for large and medium districts and 10 percent for small districts.

∎ Maintain or improve the percentage of students scoring 3 or higher between 2010 and 2012.

Northampton and Easthampton, two area districts that have been recognized by the Massachusetts Math and Science Initiative for significant gains in AP participation and test scores, did not meet the specific criteria for the College Board’s honor roll.

The organization reported that Massachusetts led the states in the number of school districts that made this year’s list.

“I congratulate these districts for their efforts to expand access to, and success in, coursework that signals readiness for a college level curriculum,” state Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester said, in a statement announcing the honor roll.

More information is available on the College Board’s website.

— BARBARA SOLOW

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