A Commitment to Equity and Access for All Students
On Wednesday, October 14, over 700 Aptos High 10th and 11th grade students took the PSAT/NMSQT (PSAT). The PSAT is the nationally offered practice test for the College Board’s SAT, a mainstay college entrance exam. In addition, 11th grade top performers can compete for the prestigious National Merit Scholar honor.
Encouraged by research showing that students taking the PSAT in both 10th and 11th grades increase their SAT scores an average of 189 points, the Aptos High Leadership Team saw the PSAT as an equity and access opportunity and made a decision to provide the exam for all 10th and 11th grade students. Traditionally, only students who were able to afford the exam or were aware of fee-waivers have taken the PSAT.
This year, financial contributions from individual families and the Aptos High Boosters Club enabled the exam to be offered to all 10th and 11th grade students. The PSAT for 10th and 11th grades demonstrates Aptos High School’s commitment to delivering accessible college entrance exam readiness to its entire student population.
In addition, while 10th and 11th grade students were testing, special programming was developed for the 9th and 12th grades. Ninth grade students learned about the CSU system and had an assembly featuring ways to have a successful and fun high school experience. Twelfth grade students experienced the “Bite of Reality” financial literacy experience hosted by Bay Federal Credit Union and also learned about the CSU system, Cabrillo College offerings and obtain assistance with college applications. In addition, 50 students saw the award-winning documentary film, “The Mask You Live In,” providing an in-depth look at American culture as it relates to the raising of young boys and men. The film was recently shown to a sold-out house of parents as a part of the Aptos High School Parent Lecture Series.
Aptos High School, established in 1968, is located in the hills of the Aptos community between the cities of Watsonville and Santa Cruz. The school’s geographic attendance area is large, serving a diverse student body from Aptos, Corralitos and Watsonville. It is one of three comprehensive high schools in the Pajaro Valley Unified School District with a student population of approximately 1400, 70 teachers and 45 staff. Education is valued in the Aptos community as evidenced by strong parent support.
In 2013, Aptos High was awarded the top accreditation of six years by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Additionally, the school achieved status as a California Distinguished School in 2012.
For more information contact Casey O’Brien, Principal at 831.688-6565, or Casey_O’Brien@pvusd.net