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Low-Income Students Won't Have to Pay for A.P. Exams

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - 04:22 PM

2:04 p.m. | Updated The city's Department of Education says it has found money to pay for the Advanced Placement exams this spring for low-income students, despite a cut in the federal subsidy for the exams.

The Education Department will use $462,000 in its budget to cover the cost of the exams.

“We made it a priority to identify funding so that all of our students have the opportunity to take their A.P. exams,” said a department spokeswoman, Barbara Morgan.

The city alerted principals about the financing availability this week. Last month, it warned that the financing was in jeopardy for low-income students after the College Board, which sponsors the exams, announced that a federal subsidy for the exams was cut to $26.95 million from $43 million.

The money is allocated to states to help financially needy students take the college-level exams at the completion of Advanced Placement courses.

Ms. Morgan said the city found a way to cover the $15 exam fee for up to three exams per low-income student, and the $53 exam fee for any additional A.P. exams that students take beyond the first three. In addition, she said the department secured a fee waiver from the College Board for A.P. exams ordered but not taken by these eligible students.

The department told principals it is exploring options for restoring funding for low-income students’ A.P. exam fees in future years. If money is identified, the city said, more information will be shared in the Principals’ Weekly, a weekly compendium of announcements that is e-mailed to principals.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this post incorrectly reported that the city would cover an increase in costs to low-income students for Advanced Placement exams. The city has found the money to pay the fees in full for low-income students.

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