AP Gossip Should Not Deter Prospective Students From Learning

The haunting image of a sleep-deprived, caffeinated and growth-stunted teenager has been the poster child against AP classes for too many years. Students shy away from AP classes because of these stereotypes and rumors, resulting in a fluctuation of AP classes over years.

Classes like United States History AP (USHAP) and Chemistry AP have only one period this year, but it is not only these classes that are facing a decline. Calculus BC, Spanish Literature, Advanced French, Latin and Economics also have fewer classes.

These results are dismal; there should be at least the same number of AP classes as last year.

According to Principal Wynne Satterwhite, the AP classes are designated due to student demand. It is then that there is less demand for certain AP classes?

Many students are dropping out of classes before taking the class or experiencing the workload.

Junior Jonathon Jecker decided that USHAP was “too much work” before the previous school year was over. Jonathon attended the AP meeting in March, but it was his friend who had taken the class two years ago before that convinced him not to take the class.

Rumors about AP classes tend to exaggerate the class to a near impossible degree or reduce them to an extremely simple degree.

However, they are often inaccurate. Other students feel the workload would disrupt their other engagement.

“I heard the workload was really intense, and with my extracurricular activities it would take up a lot of time,” junior Celine Schwarz said.

According to USHAP teacher Gabriel Stewart, students are not think about the classes correctly.

“A lot of students were afraid the class would mess with their GPAs, but there is no proof of this,” Stewart said. “At least 60 percent of students get an A or a B. Students are going to achieve when they want to succeed.”

AP classes serve as preparation for the rigors of college, and those viewing applications like to see AP classes on them. And when students don’t take AP classes, they are at a disadvantage to those who had.

The pattern among AP classes tends to be that the junior and senior year classes are less occupied. According to Satterwhite, students are just aligning their courses with what they want to do in college.

“Students are starting to look at what the choices are,” Satterwhite said. “Life happens.”

But it is the increased decline of AP classes that is alarming. Students are not preparing themselves adequately for college and will suffer in the long run.

This decline in AP classes will only cause long-term damage to those involved. Students need to stop listening to their friends and decide what is right for themselves while preparing themselves for college.

It is time that the haggard and tired teenage mascot of the common student is put away and replaced with an adolescent thoroughly in control of his or her own choices and future.