With the start of the AP exams, students and teachers at Hoboken Dual Language Charter College share their excitement about taking their first AP exams

Hoboken Dual Language Charter School is the first middle school in New Jersey to receive College Board accreditation for its college Spanish program

HOBOKEN, NJ – APRIL 29, 2022 – As students across the country prepare for the start of AP exams, seventh and eighth graders at Hoboken Dual Language Charter School (HoLa) prepare to take their first exams since their school received AP accreditation for its college Spanish program.

“Our students have proven that they already had college-level Spanish skills in middle school,” said Jen Sargent, executive director of the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School. “I have confidence in their skills and look forward to hearing about their experience once the exam is complete.”

Historically, AP exams are administered to high school students taking AP-level courses. The Hoboken Dual Language Charter School received accreditation for its faculty-developed Spanish program in early spring, with the College Board declaring the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School a model dual language program. Uniquely, every eighth grader at the school will take an AP-level curriculum. At HoLa, every student, regardless of income level or race, will take challenging AP-level courses in middle school, giving them rigorous training to prepare them for success in high school.

“Our faculty and staff at Hoboken Dual Language Charter School have been dedicated leaders in dual language and it has been amazing to watch the seventh and eighth graders prepare for these exams,” said Nicole Cammarota, Chair of the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School Board of Trustees. “I hope these students are as proud of their accomplishments to get here as we all are. Their fluency in a second language in middle school and their college-level education at such a young age will set them on the path to realizing their dreams.

Seventh and eighth graders at HoLa engaged in discussions and reviews of books this term, including novels Cuando Puertorriqueña era by Esmeralda Santiago and Quien Cuenta Las Estrellas by Lois Lowry. Students read the books and engaged in discussions about cultural analysis of literature, then wrote an essay discussing their findings, all in Spanish.

Sasha Mechaley, an 8th grade student at HoLa, expressed her excitement and nerves about taking her first AP exam.

“Taking the AP test in 8th grade is exciting and makes me a little nervous.” Sasha said. Sasha also said she was excited about the prospect of passing this exam so that she “can practice Spanish at a higher level without needing to take basic courses”. This will help her on her career path and allow her to learn other languages ​​while studying to become a doctor.

Eighth grade student Brendan Waldron is also excited about the test: “We know Spanish and it’s great to be able to use our communication skills to interact with people from other countries. It’s a great way to show off what we’ve learned since coming to HoLa.

Grade 8 Spanish teacher Jeffrey Maccoux also expressed excitement ahead of the exam.

“My Spanish students are bright, talented and enthusiastic about learning Spanish. I believe this program, designed by the teachers and professors at Hoboken Dual Language Charter School specifically to meet the interests and needs of our students, will lead them to success, and it’s a great opportunity for our students to show what they know,” said Sr. Jeffrey Maccoux, a teacher at Hoboken Dual Language Charter School.

Students who qualify for a free or reduced lunch have their AP exam fees waived. Along with students from across the country, HoLa students will take the AP Spanish Language and Culture exam on May 11.

“I am always thrilled to see a public charter school in New Jersey open up new options to provide high-quality educational options that will help prepare their students for the workforce of the future, whether their path is to university, technical school or directly into a career. “, said Harry Lee, president and CEO of the New Jersey Public Charter School Association. “HoLa’s effort to design and implement an AP Spanish course and offer it to middle school students is a great example of how public charter schools deliver on that promise.

HoLa is a public charter school dedicated to providing excellent education in English and Spanish to students from kindergarten through 8th grade. For more information, visit www.holahoboken.org.

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