Early start to school year benefits AP students and teachers

By Owen McGill

With 3,546 out of the over 4,500 students at Lane enrolled in at least one Advanced Placement (AP) class, the presence of AP courses at Lane has had an importance, especially for the last several years.

Katherine Gomez, AP Coordinator at Lane, says that by junior and senior years, the number of AP classes a student is enrolled in ranges from one to five, on average.

This year, CPS implemented a new calendar schedule with the school year beginning roughly two weeks early on Aug. 22 compared to Aug. 30 last year and Sept. 8 two years ago.

With AP exams always taking place in May , this provides AP teachers with an opportunity to prepare their students earlier for these exams and get a jumpstart on the AP curriculum.

I definitely think it’s an advantage just because you literally have more time to go over content — and two weeks is a lot because it not only means you’re gonna have more review time, but it gives teachers more flexibility,” said Lane senior Brendan Urganus, who has taken 11 AP courses.

Oftentimes AP classes are rushed at the end of the year in a scramble to finish all of the units before the exams start. Compared to last year’s pacing, this year’s pacing has improved, according to Urganus. 

“Yes, specifically, I remember last year in my AP United States History class, like a couple of weeks before the exam, we only made it to like 1945. Then everything after 1945 was super rushed, and we didn’t really get a chance to fully go over it in detail,” said Urganus.

Urganus said that the change to the calendar has been helpful.

“Most of my classes were on like unit eight, out of nine or ten. And we’re at a pretty good spot. And I think we’re gonna finish most of the classes, like early April, literally give us enough time to review for the exam,” Urganus said.