Posted on September 8, 2006
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today applauded the U.S. Department of Education for awarding a $638,875 grant to Memphis City Schools to expand low-income students’ participation in the Advanced Placement (AP) program. The funding is for a period of one year. “In the 21st century’s global economy, it’s important that we enable all students to pursue a rigorous curriculum. This funding for expanded Advanced Placement will ensure more of Memphis’ youth have the best opportunities.” Frist said. “Enabling students to take challenging coursework based on high standards is critical to their future success in postsecondary education and the workforce, and to our national competitiveness,” said Alexander. “I am pleased that this grant will help ensure that more low-income students in Memphis have access to rigorous Advanced Placement courses and their prerequisites.” The Department of Education’s Advanced Placement Incentive Program supports state and local efforts to make AP courses more widely available to low-income students. The funds will go toward the purchase of books and supplies, curriculum development, and training for teachers in high-poverty high schools to teach the courses. Grants may be also used to develop and expand pre-AP courses that prepare students to take subsequent AP courses. A bill coauthored by Alexander and cosponsored by Frist would increase the number of students who can attend Advanced Placement courses and take the test to receive college credit to 1.5 million. The legislation, the Protecting America’s Competitive Edge Act (PACE), also includes provisions to strengthen our nation’s education system by improving teacher training in math and science, recruiting more math and science teachers, and providing opportunities for math and science experts to teach in our schools.