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AP Examination

Q6, an assistant principal from Southern California, reflects on the four weeks in May he spent “losing his mind” while administering Advanced Placement (AP) Exams.

For the students, it’s about inflated GPAs and college credit; for the parents, it’s about prestige, family honor, and one-upping the family down the street; for me, it’s about getting the paperwork right and giving as many tests as necessary using the fewest resources. In a word, AP tests embody education as a whole—do it well, do it better than the other guy, and do it cheap.

He sarcastically highlights some of his most memorable experiences, including this one:

Some students come prepared to take the test. Others come not so prepared, but they take the test seriously. Others still show up to the test and you wonder how they even found the room, much less why they signed up for the class in the first place…One of the questions provided statistics about an E. Coli outbreak and asked for a statistical analysis. One student wrote the words "I don't know" and then proceeded to draw the finest pencil sketch of a hamburger I'd ever seen in my life.
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