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Newton County School System (NCSS) is pleased to announce that 82 students have earned AP Scholar Awards in recognition of their exceptional achievement on AP Exams during the 2014-2015 school  year. The College Board’s Advanced Placement Program (AP) provides willing and academically prepared students with the opportunity to take rigorous college-level courses while still in high school, and to earn college credit, advanced placement, or both for successful performance on the AP Exams.

The College Board recognizes several levels of achievement based on student’s performance on AP Exams.

AP Scholar with Distinction Award

Twelve NCSS students qualified for the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by earning an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams. These students are:

  • Alcovy High: Class of 2015—Savannah Grunhard and Elise McDonald; and Class of 2016—Elysia Baker.
  • Eastside High: Class of 2015—Anna Davis, Evan House, Kaylah Kennedy, Nicholas Tedrow, and Carly Travis; and Class of 2016—Dillon Diamond, Jackson Hall, and Brantley Proffitt.
  • Newton High: Class of 2015—Craig Thomas II and Brittany Webb; and Class of 2016—Blake Small

AP Scholar with Honor Award

Twenty NCSS students qualified for the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams.  These students include: 

  • Alcovy High: Class of 2015—Alex Yang; and Class of 2016—Anthony Johnston and Hannah Maddux.
  • Eastside High: Class of 2015—Kyle Castleberry; and Class of 2016—Nicholas Anderson, Eldredge Baulkmon, Kiersten Dacosta, Logan Davis, Courtney Farrow, David King, Angel Li, Delaney Murphy, Scott Reich, and Lily Yu.
  • Newton High: Class of 2015—Arielle Burnett, Ian Cole, Craig Thomas II, and Brittany Webb; and Class of 2016—Jonathan Hyman, Karina Norton, and Hezekiah Rodgers.

AP Scholar Award 

Forty-nine NCSS students qualified for the AP Scholar Award by completing three or more AP Exams with scores of 3 or higher. These AP Scholars include:

  • Alcovy High: Class of 2015—Tanner Barr, Carina Barreto, Keegan Brothers, Kennedy Carter, Evan Durden, Sara Hodge, Logan House, Dandre McIntyre, Elisa McPherson, Vadim Svirida, Jonathan Swann, Demontarius Tolbers, and Abigail Vanderwolf; and Class of 2016—Baylee Friedman.
  • Eastside High: Class of 2015—Savannah Campbell, Jason Cloer, Aspen Dobbins, Graham Harris, Julian Jones, Emaly Jordan, Consuelo Knepper, Havana Knepper, Jake Shelton, Tyler Still, Michael Wagner, Cassie Warthen, and Andrew Whisnant; and Class of 2016—Megan Andrews, Matthew Briscoe, Eliott Brumlow, John Drumheller, Carter Ferunden, Samuel Hay, David Jean, Syretha Joseph, Katelyn Kennedy, Paul Lumpkin, Sage Manning, Monica Privette, Daniel Thompson, and Savannah Turcotte.
  • Newton High: Class of 2015—Nkosi Cave, Kiara Connell, Andrew Hallford, and Tanique McDonald; and Class of 2016—Jessica Eller, Brianna Hayden, Israel Humphrey, and Joshua Suber.

Those students still currently enrolled in high school have this school year in which to complete additional college-level work and possibly earn a higher-level AP Scholar Award.

“Advanced Placement classes are more difficult than standard classes,” said Shannon Buff, NCSS Director of Secondary Schools. “They require the type of high-level calculating and critical thinking that students will encounter in their first year of college. As a result, students who take AP classes in high school are better prepared to handle the rigors of college-level studies. The fact that we had over 80 students attain AP Scholar status this year is exciting news. It shows that our students were well prepared for the AP exams. More importantly, it indicates that our students are committed to extending themselves in high school by taking more rigorous courses so they are better prepared and more likely to succeed when they get to college.”

Buff added, “Our students’ success on these exams also reflect the fact that we have excellent AP teachers in place who are preparing these students for college through high level teaching strategies and rigorous coursework on a daily basis. The students and the teachers should be very proud of what they’ve accomplished. As we continue to focus on college and career readiness across all grade levels, I look forward to and expect to see even more NCSS students attaining AP Scholar status in future years.”

Through 34 different college level courses and exams, AP provides willing and academically prepared students with the opportunity to earn college credit or advanced placement and stand out in the college admission process. Each exam is developed by a committee of college and university faculty and AP teachers, ensuring that AP Exams are aligned with the same high standards expected by college faculty at some of the nation’s leading liberal arts and research institutions. More than 3,800 colleges and universities annually receive AP scores. Most four-year colleges in the United States provide credit and/or advanced placement for qualifying exam scores. Research consistently shows that AP students who score a 3 or higher on AP Exams (based on a scale from 1 to 5, with 5 being the highest) typically experience greater academic success in college and have higher college graduation rates than students who do not participate in AP.

The College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of over 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education.

Each year, the College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success—including SAT and the Advanced Placement Program. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators and schools.

For more information on Newton County School System’s AP Scholars, contact Ms. Sherri Davis-Viniard, Director of Public Relations for Newton County Schools, at