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Courtesy of the Mayor's Office

New York City students took part in and passed advanced placement exams at a record rate in 2018, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in Elmhurst on Tuesday.

A total of 55,011 young people took an AP Exam in 2018, up 11.4 percent from 49,364 in 2017. The number of students that passed at least one exam in 2018 was up 10.7 percent. Every borough saw an increase in students both taking and succeeding at the exams, which are a part of Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza’s “AP For All” initiative. All ethnic groups also saw increases.

The chancellor and mayor made the announcement Tuesday at Civic Leadership Academy, which has tripled the number of AP courses it offers through the AP for All initiative, alongside state Senator Jessica Ramos and Councilman Daniel Dromm.

“For too long, the city wasn’t doing its part to provide access to Advanced Placement programs, sending a message to students that they weren’t college material,” said de Blasio. “We came into office to shake things up and remind all students of their potential. Our AP for All programs are moving mountains for students in every neighborhood with a record number of students testing and passing AP courses and allowing more bright young minds to earn college credit for their futures.”

“AP for All is working,” added Carranza. “With our Equity and Excellence for All agenda, we are raising expectations, strengthening instruction, and creating a college-going culture among both our students and our educators, and we’re seeing the impact not only in AP results but in graduation and college enrollment rates. ”

The program seeks to increase participation and performance at AP exams with a particular focus on black and Hispanic students, as part of the city’s “Equity and Excellence for All” agenda. The city supported new AP classes at 152 schools during the 2017-18 school year, with the initiative reaching 252 schools. The goal is for students at all high schools in New York City to have access to at least five AP classes.

Progress has been shown since the program began, with the number of students taking AP exams rose 92.1 percent since the initiative launched in 2016. The number of students passing has gone up 64.9 percent. The diversity standards have also raised: in 2018, 19.4 percent Hispanic and 7.1 percent more black students took at least one AP exam than in 2017. Since 2013, Hispanic participation has risen 58.7 percent and black student participation is up 60 percent.

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