Placentia-Yorba Linda shows score improvements with AP and International Baccalaureate programs
More records were set by Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate students who took the hours-long examinations earlier this year at high schools in the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District.
Scores earned by students maintain a years-long district tradition of giving more tests to more students, with a higher percentage of students earning passing scores at most school sites.
Students earning passing or better scores on the AP and IB examinations can earn university-level credits and often bypass introductory courses, although colleges and universities make their own decisions on credit and placement options for students.
This year, 4,088 AP tests were administered district-wide during a two-week period in May, up from 4,070 last year and 3,890 the year before. Passing is considered to be a score of “3” or better on a five-point scale.
Here’s how the individual high schools fared, based on a district-compiled comparison chart, with numbers provided by each school:
- El Dorado: 861 tests were administered in 22 subjects, with the Hawk pass rate increasing to 79.42 percent from 76.3 percent last year and 75.67 percent the year before.
- Esperanza: 703 tests were administered in 21 subjects, with the Aztec pass rate increasing to 80.23 percent from 76.34 percent last year and 80.03 percent the year before.
- Valencia: 1,531 tests were administered in 29 subjects, with the Tiger pass rate increasing to 87.85 percent from 86.77 percent last year and 85.98 percent the year before.
- Yorba Linda: 993 tests were administered in 24 subjects, with the Mustang pass rate down a bit at 88.22 percent from 89.04 percent last year and up from 87.36 percent the year before.
Students are allowed to take AP tests beginning in the freshman year. For example, at Valencia, teacher Sam Myovich had 75 students take the Human Geography exam and 90.67 percent passed, with 26 students achieving the top score of “5” and 24 notching a “4.”
The most popular AP test was English Language and Composition, with 561 administered to mostly juniors, 107 at El Dorado, 114 at Esperanza, 219 at Valencia and 121 at Yorba Linda.
The International Baccalaureate program at Valencia High School also set another record, with 78 full-diploma graduates, up from 76 last year and 64 and 41 the two previous years.
The school earned a pass rate of 90.2 percent, with 443 of 491 tests administered in 20 subjects earning a “4” or better on a seven-point scale.
Program coordinator Fred Jenkins said the campus expects up to 85 full-diploma graduates in 2019. The school’s diploma pass rate, based on students who successfully attempt and earn the full diploma, is 91 percent, far better than IB’s global pass rate of 79.3 percent.
Qualified students are allowed to take IB classes, even if they aren’t seeking the full diploma. Both AP and IB students completed reading, essay and other assignments over the summer.