WASHINGTON - Prince George’s county schools have decided to continue to cover the costs of AP exam fees for students this year. They made the announcement on Thursday, after parents and students voiced their concern with the sudden fee changes made on September 26.
The school system said in an on-line announcement Thursday:
“Since our September 26 letter regarding changes to Advanced Placement (AP) Exam fees, we have heard from many of you expressing concern about the timing of the notification and Prince George’s County Public Schools’ commitment to the AP program.” The letter continued on to say: We understand your concerns and we do not want any family to feel anxiety over paying for AP Exams. For the 2016-17 school year, PGCPS will continue the practice of covering AP Exam fees for all students. This decision does have financial implications that will require some additional adjustments, but we feel that this is the right thing to do. We will revisit this practice for the 2017-18 school year, allowing students and families’ adequate time to plan and adjust, if needed. Currently, Prince George’s County Public Schools is the only system in the region to assume the cost for all students.
Teachers will still provide students with the same rigorous instructional opportunities in the classroom that serve to prepare them for the AP Exams they will take at the end of the year.”
For years Prince George’s county schools paid the $92 it cost for each one of their students to take the AP test. In total it cost the district about a half million dollars. But then, citing budget cuts a letter went home to parents announcing that Prince George’s county was canceling the practice of paying for all tests. Instead they said only students in the free lunch program, or those who scored a three, four or five on the tests would have their exams paid for.
Parents and students became angry over the sudden changes and that is when a new letter was released and relieved that the district is going back to their original policy to pay for all Advanced Placement tests for all students this year.