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BRHS Students Have Highest Scores in AP Tests

The students scored higher than the state averages in math.

The is celebrating success after students achieved the highest average advanced placement scores in AP calculus and probability/statistics tests ever recorded at the school.

According to high school math teacher Steven Kane, a total of 222 AP mathematics exams were taken by students in the 2011-2012 school year.

Out of all those exams, Kane said, the students had an average score of 4.7 out of 5, the highest ever at BRHS.

“And it crushes the national average, which would be a 3.2,” he said.

Out of all the exams, Kane said, 220 earned a 3 or better, and more than 95 percent of the exams taken scored a 4 or 5, which is advanced proficiency.

That, Kane said, is higher than the national average of less than 50 percent.

“This year saw record scores in individual classes,” he said. “We had the highest average scores ever in calculus BC and calculus AB, highest percentage of 5 scores in all math subjects, and probability/statistics had its sixth year in a row with 100 percent passing rate.”

Kane said New Jersey does have the highest AP scores in the nation, but the BRHS students beat even the state averages.

“If the math department were a high school, we’d be number two in the nation,” said Steve Beatty, social studies teacher at BRHS and president of the , at the July 24 board of education meeting.

For example, Kane said, in AB calculus, the BRHS average was 4.6, while the state average was 3.4. In BC calculus, he said, the BRHS average was 4.8, and the state average was 4.2.

Finally, Kane said, in probability/statistics, the BRHS average was 4.7 and the state average was 3.2.

Superintendent of Schools Michael Schilder said at the meeting that the district did receive the scores, and are awaiting an official report from the college boards.

“We are thrilled,” he said.

Kane said the students and staff worked diligently to make this happen.

“We held four 4-hour review session for the kids, including one during spring vacation,” he said. “These sessions were staffed entirely by teacher volunteers, including teachers that had nothing to do with the exams.”

Metoo August 05, 2012 at 11:30 AM
Bonuses to the AP teachers will be in the next paycheck...
teachB-R August 05, 2012 at 11:59 AM
Bonuses to the superintendent are more likely in this district.
Steve Kane August 05, 2012 at 12:01 PM
Congrats to our students! Everyone put in an incredible effort and it paid off beautifully! One thing to note: in the headline Sunday it said "highest scores in the state." We have no information about that. We do know the state, US, and world averages, and our kids obviously beat those numbers. These were the best-ever math results at BRHS, and it's likely they're among the best of any high school anywhere, but we don't get score reports for other districts. I was the one who compiled the statistics....if anyone has questions let me know. Otherwise, just be proud of our kids for a job well done!
Special K August 05, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Based on (a) the fact that examinees taking tests administered by the College Board, for example, who identify themselves as “Asian American” earn markedly higher average scores on the math section, and (b) the assumption that BRHS enrolls a significant number of students who so identify themselves, it is important, before attributing causal effects (to “the school”, for example) to control for variables known to be related to the outcome under consideration. Perhaps data might be made available that would shed light on the make-up of the sample by ethnicity and average AP performance by ethnic group, not only at BRHS, but also New Jersey, generally.
Special K August 05, 2012 at 01:44 PM
If AP results are available for Japan, South Korea and the PRC, how do the BRHS results compare with averages for examinees in; those countries?
Special K August 05, 2012 at 01:49 PM
Just checked for "ethnic composition New Jersey" (prompt) and found the following potentially pertinent information: "The Asian population jumped 51 percent, to more than 700,000, or 8.2 percent of the total, while the number of Hispanics climbed 39 percent, to more than 1.5 million, or 17.7 percent. The black population changed little, at 1.1 million, or 12.8 percent. ... Asian population growth was heaviest in suburban Middlesex County, particularly in Edison, Piscataway, Woodbridge and East Brunswick.. . .."
Metoo August 05, 2012 at 01:58 PM
And by another variable, how education is valued and dealt with in the home.
Special K August 05, 2012 at 05:17 PM
AP results for New Jersey are available at http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/exgrd_sum/2011.html AP results are shown by state by ethnic group for all AP exams, including two Calculus exams (AB and BC). Limited analysis of data shown for New Jersey indicates that 80.5 percent of all AP exams were taken by Asian or White students. Also that these two groups accounted for 84.7 percent of all Calculus exams taken. For Asian students Calculus accounted for 15.5% of all AP exams taken, and the corresponding value for White students was 11.5 % Considering Calculus exams only, 62.2% of students identifying themselves as Asian scored 5, the highest possible scores, whereas for their White counterparts the corresponding value was 34.8%. Analysis of data by ethnic group is needed to permit "understanding" of the BRHS performance, and that of New Jersey as compared to other states.
Steve Kane August 05, 2012 at 05:54 PM
Wow. I expected a reaction of "man, those are some pretty impressive scores. Way to go, BRHS kids! You did great!" Instead the comments have turned strangely racist. Do you really need to know the racial makeup of my class in order to say "great job, kids!"? What does it matter? Your racist comments make me want to go take a shower to rinse off the slime. You don't need to break this achievement down by ethnicity. I can tell you exactly what created these results: a crew of hundreds of kids with caring parents, dedicated teachers, and a work ethic that is second to none came in and aced that test. These kids rocked it and the community supported them all along the way. I can tell you that when my students had to apply the second fundental theorem of calculus, their skin color wasn't a factor.
KimR August 13, 2012 at 04:25 AM
As a student who earned a 5 on the AP Calculus AB exam and was a member of Dr. Steve Kane's class, I have to comment. This year's excellent results are because of the teachers' dedication. They inspired us to push past expectations. They make us WANT to be the best in the nation and provide us with all the resources to do so. Thank you DK, and all of the math department for being an inspiration. I will never forget them!
HT August 13, 2012 at 06:28 PM
These are all advanced students who enroll in AP Calculus AB, BC and Stat. For BRHS classes to do this well compared to all test takers and obtain such an incredible average, it is truly amazing. Everyone deserves a round of applause. BRHS rocks!
Kim Kornbluth August 14, 2012 at 04:42 AM
I agree completely with Kim R. I've had the pleasure of having Dr. Kane for two years and Mr. Weth for one year, all of which were great experiences for me. I'm sure I am speaking for everyone when I say how fortunate we were to have such great teachers who made math fun and who went above and beyond to make sure we performed to our potential on the AP exams. I felt so prepared going into the exams, and I feel more than ready for Calculus at the college level. I only wish I could bring them with me. Thank you DK and Mr. Weth! And congrats to all my classmates as well. We deserved it!
A Learner August 15, 2012 at 08:54 AM
I very much agree with the sentiment that our teachers played a large part in such excellent scores. As both Kim's mentioned, our teachers pushed us to work hard with not necessarily untraditional methods, but still in an entertaining way. They made learning the material enjoyable and with thorough explanations, easy to absorb. As a student of Calculus BC from 2 school years ago, I remember being told we had the highest average AP score ever at BRHS, but I'm glad to hear that this past year our average was beaten and I hope the trend continues. We should all be very thankful for all the hard work that our teachers put in for us (I specifically remember Mr. Weth working around the birth of his baby to help us prepare for the exam), I can only hope I have professors in college of their caliber.

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