Gettin' Smart: It's Worth It!

I had no idea it paid so well to be a DISD student. That's what it says in the new issue of U.S. News & World Report:

In Dallas, high school students can pocket about $100 for every passing score on college-level examinations. The Advanced Placement Incentive Program "has created a culture where it's cooler to be in an AP class than to be in a regular class," says Michael Watkins, associate principal at W. T. White High School.

The influx of less prepared minority students has brought down the school's passing rate on AP tests. But, Watkins says, at least those students are getting exposed to challenging classes taught by the best teachers, and that's in turn motivating many to pursue college. It helps that teachers can also cash in on their students' success.

When I went to T.J., if you did well on a test you got to finish your coffee and smoke in the teachers' lounge. --Robert Wilonsky


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