The official student newspaper of The Hockaday School

The Fourcast

The official student newspaper of The Hockaday School

The Fourcast

The official student newspaper of The Hockaday School

The Fourcast

Ms. Day speaks to Hockaday students as well as other students in the Dallas area as part of her role to involve Hockaday students in the community and lead them to fulfill their purpose.
Jade
A day with Ms. Day
Sarah Moskowitz and Melinda HuMay 19, 2024

How did you get your start in social impact? Day: Out of college, I decided to do a year in a program called The Jesuit Volunteer Corps. It...

Lone Star Royalty Q&A
Jade
Lone Star Royalty Q&A
Lang Cooper and Mary Bradley SutherlandMay 17, 2024

What initially interested you in beauty pageants? Roberts: When I was six I joined the Miss America Organization. This program is for girls...

Opinion
Branching Out During Break
Jessica Boll, Web Editor in Chief • May 16, 2024

Instead of lazily lounging by the pool this summer, taking advantage of an academic break is the best usage of the months when we don't have...

Senior Splash Day
Senior Splash Day
May 13, 2024

To Cut or to Keep

The ongoing debate over AP curriculum
To+Cut+or+to+Keep

The Advanced Placement (AP) course debate continues to get hotter.? Just as test-optional policies for the SAT and ACT exams have continued to elicit debate well after the COVID-19 pandemic, AP courses and exams administered by the College Board?have continued to draw controversy both on the college landscape and throughout high schools.? 

?In our opinion, the answer is simple. Students should not be restricted from opportunities to tailor their coursework and craft an academic journey that’s right for them. As Hockaday contemplates whether to continue or cut down on offering AP courses, we feel it would be a grave disservice to eliminate them completely. 

? First, AP courses offer a standardized curriculum that is recognized nationally and ensures accountability by college preparatory high schools. Far from restricting teachers to a trademarked curriculum, AP courses can allow an organized, well-established framework that can be accentuated by the exceptional resources we have at Hockaday. 

? The College Board’s videos and practice questions are also excellent resources that allow students to engage with terminology and concepts that can reinforce what Hockaday offers in its honors classes.  

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? Second, just as upper school students are encouraged to explore the variety of honors courses offered through Hockaday’s course catalog, the option for pursuing AP courses should be no different. Our student body should not have to rely solely on self-studying to be able to pursue these specialized areas of interest. 

? Removing AP Chemistry as an option for sophomores is one example of the trend toward limiting students in their course options. This type of decision should be considered on an individual basis for students who qualify, just as they would for advanced math or language courses. At the very least, if staffing or funding of these courses are an issue, the use of online vendors such as One Schoolhouse and Laurel Springs which have nationally approved AP course offerings, should continue to be honored and encouraged. ? 

? The stress of AP exams and obtaining college credit has also been frequently cited as an argument for removing them from high school course offerings. These options have advantages that each student should be allowed to weigh for themselves. Standardized testing is a reality that is here to stay. Regardless of the field, certification and qualification exams are the rule in almost any career path. Many of us feel that exposure to these exams is facilitative for future college success and beyond. 

 Abandoning the AP curriculum would significantly disadvantage our students in a landscape that does continue to factor in standardized scores. Most importantly, it would limit them from pursuing enriching opportunities that are of indispensable personal value

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About the Contributor
Anya Aggarwal
Anya Aggarwal, Staff Writer