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Black Students Excel At NY School

 NEW YORK  -- SciTech Educational Solutions has announced that 35% of Eagle Academy students in the Bronx received a passing grade of 3 or higher on the World History Advance Placement (AP) exam.  

According to the College Board, only 50% of Advanced Placement test takers pass their exams. Among African-American students, the passing rate is even lower with only 24% receiving a qualifying grade of 3 or above. Knowing these statistics, Eagle Academy brought in SciTech Educational Solutions, known for successfully implementing AP curriculum in urban schools to help launch the school's new AP curriculum.

"Students in our AP Program do well because the curriculum addresses the content, test-taking skills and writing skills needed to excel," says Kim Magloire, president of SciTech. "Our program is unique because we customize the curriculum to include topics that are engaging and relevant to African-American boys. For example, when discussing rhetorical strategies we analyze Martin Luther King's Letter from Birmingham Jail." The program's success is also due to weekly visits by SciTech's staff.  "SciTech has been instrumental in the development of Advanced Placement courses at the Eagle Academy," said David Banks, the Eagle Academy Foundation President.  "They have helped Eagle raise its level of competitiveness and academic rigor with a comprehensive curriculum; training for our teachers and on-going mentoring that ensures our young men continue to succeed."   

As the test date approached, students attended Saturday classes to bolster their test-taking skills. Fortunately, that extra work paid off.  "What was most striking was that students did best on the essay portion of the test, traditionally the weakest section for African-American students, says Magloire. On some essays, they even outperformed their peers. Similarly, 27% of the students passed the English Language exam and surpassed the national passing rate of 21% for African Americans, adds Magloire.  "Normally it takes an urban school three years before it sees its first passing grade on AP exams."  

While some educators feel that many kids in urban schools have been set up for failure by forcing them to take AP exams, the consensus at Eagle Academy is quite the contrary.  "We know our students need the rigor that an AP curriculum provides," saysDonald Ruff, the college director at Eagle. "Beyond passing AP exams," says Magloire, "I'm most pleased that the boys have a new appreciation for learning and the skill set to complete college-level work."

"I'm taking AP classes at Eagle so that I'm better prepared for West Point Academy next fall," says Roberto Huie.


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