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NEISD Recognized at AP Conference


Brenna Castellano along with district representatives, accepts the District of the Year award.

Last week, it was quickly realized that all the hard work and dedication that North East ISD educators put into the classroom is well worth it. Four district representatives were invited to attend the AP Annual Conference to be recognized as the AP District of the Year. The four attendees were: Sheila Richards, an AP English teacher from Johnson High School, Brenna Castellano, an outstanding AP student from Madison High School, Patti Castellano, Senior Director for School Improvement, and Terri Chidgey, Executive Director for School Improvement.

"The College Board is proud to recognize the students, faculty, and administrators of North East Independent School District for their innovation and commitment to setting high standards for student achievement," said College Board President David Coleman. "I applaud the extraordinary efforts of the devoted teachers and administrators in this district who are fostering rigorous work worth doing. Congratulations on being the first school district in Texas to receive this recognition."

Brenna Castellano enlightened the minds of the College Board professionals in attendance as she presented her AP experience at Madison. Sheila Richards had the opportunity to share best practices in a panel discussion with the likes of John Quinones, host of ABC news magazine, What Would You Do?

Group photo

The NEISD representatives had the opportunity to meet ABC host, John Quinones.

The three-day conference brought AP educators together to share teaching strategies, learn about methods to increase access and equity to AP course work, in addition to networking and sharing best practices with other dedicated AP educators from throughout the U.S. and around the world.

In November 2012, NEISD was one of a record 539 school districts across the U.S. and Canada that achieved placement on the annual AP District Honor Roll. From this list, three AP Districts of the Year — one for each category of district population size: small, medium and large — were selected based on an analysis of three academic years of AP data. From 2009-10 to 2011-12, NEISD:

• Simultaneously and continuously increased the number of students taking AP classes while improving successful outcomes (a score of 3 or better) on AP Exams, with over half of all AP students scoring a 3 or better in 2012;

• Increased student participation in AP by 8 percent annually and the percentage of students scoring a 3 or better on at least one AP Exam by 3 percent annually; and

• Increased the percentage of traditionally underserved minority AP students earning a 3 or above on at least one AP Exam by 8 percent annually — an increase of 239 students since 2010.

Increasing access to AP course work while simultaneously increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher is the ideal scenario for a district’s AP program, indicating that the district is successfully preparing a larger array of its students for the rigor of AP and college studies.

NEISD was initially honored as District of the Year at an award assembly at Churchill High School on Mar. 4. Click here to watch.

Posted on July 24, 2013