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General Questions


No. Pre-AP is a program designed for all students. The courses are intended to be the baseline standard course in their subject areas. All students deserve the opportunity to develop the foundation necessary for college readiness and AP coursework.  

If you offer any of the Pre-AP courses listed on this site, they must be offered to all on-level students (see below). Schools or districts are free to augment or enhance our Pre-AP offerings in order to make them part of their honors curriculum.

It means that participating schools offer the courses to all of their students. Pre-AP courses should serve as the baseline standard course in their subject areas for all students across the whole grade level. Only students who require significant accommodations may be exempt from participation at the school’s discretion. Note: If a state’s policy mandates that schools cannot require students to take a college preparatory course, that policy supersedes the Pre-AP policy, and schools may adjust accordingly. If this policy applies to you, we do ask that participating schools give students “open access” to Pre-AP, with no barriers to participation (e.g., test scores, grades in prior coursework, teacher or counselor recommendation, etc.).

Yes. Course instructional materials and assessments are delivered digitally. Teachers need access to an internet-enabled device (phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop) and broadband Wi-Fi to access the instructional materials and administer the assessments. For the initial cohort, the program will supply the teacher with a printed course guide as well as the digital resources. 

Yes. Assessments will be delivered digitally. Students will be expected to complete eight assessments per course, each taking less than one class period. They will need access to an internet-enabled device (phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop) and broadband Wi-Fi to complete these assessments. However, the course materials are delivered as PDF files on our digital platform and thus can be printed if necessary. For the initial cohort, the program will supply the students with printed student readers as well as the digital resources. 

Yes. Pre-AP courses are designed to sit alongside your existing textbook and local curricular resources, but you will need to confirm the alignment of these materials to the course requirements.  

Schools that use SpringBoard as their comprehensive curriculum for ELA and math can bypass this portion of the course audit process that begins in 2020. 

Pre-AP courses are designed to meet college readiness, AP, PSAT/NMSQT, and SAT standards. The courses will cover some of a state’s standards, and we will provide standards crosswalks that identify which state standards are covered in Pre-AP courses. We intentionally designed the Pre-AP courses to be flexible, i.e., they cover 30%–50% of instructional time, depending on the subject, and thus allow schools the instructional time to utilize local materials and cover the state standards that Pre-AP courses do not address. 

Pre-AP courses do not have an end of course assessment that competes with or replaces an individual state’s assessment. Starting in year two, the courses will have final exams that a teacher normally has in any class. 

In year three (2020-21 school year), we will open up the program to all schools. We are beginning the program with a small number of schools in order to ensure that we learn, adapt, and develop the program in the most effective way possible to ensure it is as robust an offering as possible in year three.

Yes. For the initial two cohorts, these courses will be available for ninth graders only, but in future years courses can be offered at any grade level.

We understand that some students will have already taken Algebra 1 in middle school. However, unless all of your students have already completed Algebra 1, we suggest that your school offer this course to the remaining students. The Pre-AP Program will over time expand into other grades to accommodate such districts that offer Algebra 1 in eighth grade.

Pre-AP designation is granted at the course level.

Beginning in fall of 2022, all courses labeled Pre-AP must be submitted and approved through the Pre-AP course audit process. Schools can continue utilizing the same resources they have developed for their local pre-AP courses but will no longer be able to call them Pre-AP in fall 2022.

Our aim is to create a unified and consistent set of expectations for any course called Pre-AP—including making Pre-AP coursework available for all students—while preserving local flexibility in what is taught. Schools and districts that wish to continue using the Pre-AP designation will have a transition period of up to four years to adapt to these new expectations.

All new Pre-AP teachers will need to attend the four-day, face-to-face professional learning workshop.

For SpringBoard Schools and Districts


The SpringBoard Program is a comprehensive ELA and math curriculum for grades 6–12. The Pre-AP Program is a set of courses designed to prepare all students for high school and college success as well as AP coursework. Pre-AP is not a comprehensive curriculum but rather offers course frameworks and selected lessons, routines, and/or tasks that allow teachers the flexibility to use their own materials and resources. 

Pre-AP courses go beyond ELA and math and are designed with a specific focus on cross-disciplinary alignment. Pre-AP subjects currently include ELA, Algebra 1, World History and Geography, Biology, and Visual and Performing Arts, with more courses planned for the future.

Pre-AP is currently designed for ninth graders (with other grades to follow in the future). The program emphasizes certain basic learning tenets and methodologies that augment and reinforce the current ninth-grade SpringBoard curriculum in ELA and math. 

Yes. Eventually, SpringBoard ELA and math will be redesigned to fully incorporate the Pre-AP instructional shifts and routines, so Pre-AP schools may select SpringBoard as their comprehensive curriculum for those subjects and bypass sections of the course audit process that will begin in 2020. Prior to these redesigns, we will help SpringBoard schools create curriculum maps to support both programs in math and ELA. For this initial cohort, SpringBoard schools will go through the same process as everyone else.