Alabama, Tennessee to receive grants to cover AP test fees

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Alabama and Tennessee are among 42 states named by the U.S. Department of Education to share in more than $28.8 million in grants to cover a portion of the fees charged to low-income students for taking advanced placement (AP) tests. Alabama was awarded $252,130 and Tennessee will receive $344,613.

Based on the anticipated number of test-takers and other factors, the grants are expected to be sufficient to pay all but $10 of the cost of each advanced placement exam taken by low-income students. States may opt to require students to pay a portion of the costs.

"Participation in Advanced Placement courses gives … students a jump start in college by challenging them to develop stronger study and critical-thinking skills," Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in a statement. "These grants will eliminate some financial roadblocks and enable more minority students to gain access to rigorous AP courses, which will help them succeed in today's knowledge economy."

By subsidizing test fees for low-income students, the program is intended to encourage those students to take AP tests and obtain college credit for high school courses, reducing the time and cost required to complete a postsecondary degree, the statement said.

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