Lt. Governor unveils program to help rural high school students prepare for college
Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti (Thursday) unveiled a new Advanced Placement (AP) pilot program that will give students at rural Illinois high schools access to online AP classes to better prepare them for college.
A new initiative of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council (GRAC) that Sanguinetti chairs, the AP pilot program kicks off today with classes for 75 students at 10 high schools in rural areas across the state. Sanguinetti held news conferences at Altamont High School in Altamont and Central A&M High School in Moweaqua to announce the program.
“AP classes help prepare students for college and can even make college more affordable, but unfortunately access to AP classes is extremely limited in rural areas,” Sanguinetti said. “This pilot program will test the feasibility of expanding AP classes through distance education so that students in rural Illinois will get the same opportunities to learn as their counterparts in the urban areas of our state.”
Participating schools in the pilot program include: Kankakee High School, Altamont High School, Knoxville High School, Illini Central High School, Tri-Point High School, Pope County High School, Orangeville High School, Quincy High School, Central A&M High School, and Georgetown-Ridge Farm High School.
“Concern exists that small rural schools have greater difficulty preparing students with the skills necessary for successful college careers because of the lack of AP or specialized coursework,” said Dr. Bobbi Mattingly, Superintendent of Regional Office of Education #11. “Distance education has the potential to provide more choices which in turn better prepares rural youth to attend college.”