Florida Lands Third in AP Exam Success Nationwide

This might completely blow your mind, seeing as we're about to drop some actual positive education news on you. It might further explode your gourd to know that this particular piece of good tidings comes in the category of school testing — not exactly a field in which Florida excels. But according to numbers crunched by the College Board, Florida has landed high in a ranking of student performance on AP exams.

It might have been a minute or so since you were sweating over AP exams in high school, so let's recap: These are the tests that count for college credit and also act as unofficial bragging points in the endless hormone-juiced rat race that now passes for the final years of schooling before college. The tests are scored on a possible one-to-five scale, with anything three and above constituting a passing grade and the Mario star of said college credit. 

According to Sunshine State News, the College Board has determined that Florida came in third place among the 50 states in the percentage of high schoolers walking out of the building having passed at least one AP course. Thirty percent of Florida students passed at least one test in 2014, landing the Sunshine State in the number-three slot. Sitting at numbers one and two: Maryland and Connecticut, which came in with 31.8 percent and 30.8 percent, respectively. Dropping to the fourth spot: Massachusetts, with a 29.4 passing rate. 

The Sunshine State News also reports that the national average is 21.6 percent. Overall, 320,000 students take AP courses. 

Florida, as you might know, is not having it easy when it comes to testing. The first round of the computer-based Florida Standards Assessment test, which largely replaces the FCAT, was marred by cyber attacks and other computer issues that kept a small portion of students from finishing the test. The state has vowed to beef up online security for the platform for the second round of testing this month. 

But still, there hasn't been a full explanation of what exactly went wrong with the first round. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating. 

Back on the AP front, Florida's good news in 2014 is a step up from 2013. The state was ranked fourth in passing in 2013.
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Kyle Swenson
Contact: Kyle Swenson