Making the Grade Provides Students with a Special Payday

Student and  dad with Check and Backpack

A group of 63 Duncanville High School students were greeted with cheers, awards and money last week. The students each received checks ranging from $100 to $300 for their performance on the Advanced Placement (AP) exams. Duncanville ISD celebrated the occasion with a drive-through event where a total of $6,000 was distributed to students.

This event concluded the first year of a three-year grant for$750,000 from the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) and Texas Instruments. The grant provides monetary incentives to students who scored a 3 or higher on AP exams in English, language arts and reading, math, science and computer science. The partnership also includes monetary incentives for teachers who increase AP scores from their students from year to year. It also provides money for increased training for AP teachers and covers the cost of AP exams for our students.

“It is an exciting time and the first time that our students have gotten these checks to recognize their hard work,” said Dr. Nneka Bernard, Duncanville ISD Director of Advanced Academics & Library Services.

Daniela Pedraja, a senior at the Duncanville High School Collegiate Academy, said the opportunity to earn money helped motivate her to study and prepare for her AP biology exam.

“I did NMSI Saturday study sessions,” Daniela said. “It was a hard course, but I knew I would overcome any challenges because taking college classes has prepared me for something like this.”

Daniela plans to save the NMSI money for high school expenses, such as a cap and gown, or college.