Learning in the Fast Lane: The Past, Present, and Future of Advanced Placement (Princeton, 2019), the new book by Chester Finn and Andrew Scanlan, tells the story of the Advanced Placement (AP) program, widely regarded as the gold standard for academic rigor in American high schools. AP is enormous today—22,000 participating schools, 3 million students a year taking 5 million exams—and embraced and praised by many, but not by all. Some elite private schools have turned against it while some educators and policymakers favor dual enrollment in its many forms as a better alternative for kids. Advanced Placement faces other challenges, too, including curricular culture wars, credit denial by prominent universities, and the difficulty of infusing its rigor into more schools.
Join us on December 9, as we gather AP experts, advocates, and critics along with Chester Finn, to discuss the future of Advanced Placement in today’s America. Featured participants are:
- Clara Haskell Botstein of Bard High School Early Colleges to explain the benefits of dual credit and early-college programs for high-school students.
- Peter Gow of the Independent Curriculum Group and One Schoolhouse to explain why dozens of high-status prep schools are choosing not to offer AP-designated courses.
- Trevor Packer, who heads Advanced Placement at the College Board, to explain today’s AP program, important recent changes and additions to it, and its merits going forward.
- Jack Smith, superintendent of schools in Montgomery County, Maryland, to offer a veteran practitioner’s perspective on how AP (and IB) functions in a large, diverse school system and explain why that system is working to expand their reach.
Chester Finn will engage the other participants and moderate the conversation.
11:30AM Lunch available
12:00PM Introduction of Participants and Book
12:15PM Discussion with Participants
1:10PM Audience Q&A
Clara Haskell Botstein, Associate Vice President of Bard High School Early Colleges
Peter Gow, Independent Curriculum Group Resource Director at One Schoolhouse
Trevor Packer, Senior Vice President and Director of Advanced Placement at the College Board
Jack Smith, Superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools
Chester E. Finn, Jr., Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Distinguished Senior Fellow and President Emeritus, Thomas B. Fordham Institute, and co-author of Learning in the Fast Lane
Join the conversation on social media with #LearningInTheFastLane
If you are unable to attend in person, we invite you to watch the live stream on this page. A full video will be posted to this page and to our YouTube channel within 24 hours.