Michigan awarded $639,367 to help low-income students take AP tests

Low-income students who plan on taking an AP test next year will have some help paying for it.

The U.S. Department of Education announced today that it has awarded the Michigan Department of Education a $639,367 grant in an effort to boost college and career readiness.

The Advanced Placement Test Fee Program is expected to pay for all but $18 of the cost for each exam. By subsidizing test fees, the program gives (definition of low-income students) a chance to obtain college credit for high school courses and reduce the time required to complete a postsecondary degree. However, states may opt to require students to pay a portion of the costs.

“We know that when students of all backgrounds are held to high expectations they excel. High school instruction needs to become more rigorous to foster college and career-readiness, and provide multiple pathways to success in order to prepare students for the 21st century global economy,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “Advanced Placement courses are helping schools meet this challenge by developing the study skills, critical reasoning, and habits of mind that prepare students for college. These grants eliminate some of the financial roadblocks for low-income students taking Advanced Placement courses, letting them take tests with the potential of earning college credit while in high school.”

The grants are used to help pay for approved advanced placement tests administered by the College Board, the International Baccalaureate Organization and Cambridge International Examinations. The level of funding each state received was determined by the estimated number of tests that would be taken by low-income students. From 2013 to 2014, the number of tests for low income students covered by the program increased by over 6 percent.