LAKESIDE — Blue Ridge High School is implementing a new and more rigorous Advanced Placement (AP) program to better prepare students for college. Though the high school offered AP classes before, this year Blue Ridge was approved to be an AP Capstone school. This means the school can now offer the Capstone Diploma – which is prestigious and internationally recognized. By focusing on AP, Blue Ridge hopes to set itself apart from other high schools in the White Mountains and compete on a national level.

Blue Ridge rolled out two completely new AP classes for the current year: AP Human Geography and AP Seminar. Jeff Robinson, the AP Department Chair and AP Human Geography teacher, said he hopes to have the whole program completely laid out for the class of 2023. Since AP standards and tests are nationally recognized, graduating from a full-fledged AP program will help the class of 2023 compete with other high-performing students from bigger or non-public schools.

When asked why he liked the new AP program Adam Reeck, the AP Seminar teacher, said, “It makes coming to work more enjoyable. I have 14 students who show up every day and are active and participating.” He went on to explain the AP program helps establish a better student-teacher relationship by creating a better learning environment.

Both Reeck and Robinson commented on the immense value of getting college credits in high school. If students follow the AP program all four years they will graduate with twenty-four college credits, the equivalent to a year in college. This allows students to pay for only three years of college. Depending on the college, this can save students $10,000- $50,000.

The new AP program is an invaluable addition to Blue Ridge’s education. By providing a way for students to compete on a national level, creating a better learning environment and helping students get college credits early, the new AP program is equipping Blue Ridge students with resources and skills that will help them be successful in college.

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