A bridge from honors to college-level math no longer, precalculus has officially joined the ranks of AP classes. The College Board announced May 17 that starting in 2023, sophomores and juniors can further solidify their algebra and geometry skills at a college level with AP Precalculus before moving on to Calculus a year later.
Since the announcement is so recent, Heritage has not officially said whether or not they are planning on offering this class come 2023. Regardless, some current math teachers are excited about this opportunity.
“The offering of this course is a great step forward for mathematics education across the nation,” Mr. Wesley Moore, Honors Precalculus teacher, said. “It was great to see [that] the College Board’s goal for this course addresses an obstacle for many college freshmen: success in prerequisite mathematics courses.”
The College Board claimed in their AP Precalculus announcement that “without strong preparation in high school, students struggle to complete remedial or introductory college math classes.” Even more concerning, more than 40% of students assigned to remedial math courses fail to pass them, which can put their degree in jeopardy. The College Board hopes that, by offering AP Precalculus to high schoolers, students will “[improve] math readiness and [stay] on track for college.”
While some teachers are eager to start teaching, not everyone is on board. “It’s a money-making scam,” junior Sanshray Singh, who takes AP Calculus AB, said. “People will buy tests and training material [from College Board] which will just make them more money… there’s no guarantee that colleges will even give credit.”
Ultimately, whether College Board designed AP Precalculus to make money, help students or some combination of the two, this new course is sure to shake up the way high schools approach higher-level math.