Advanced Placement


Advanced Placement (AP) courses are some of the most rigorous courses offered at Ponderosa High School. These courses receive weighted grades. AP courses offered to students include the following: AP Art History, AP Jewelry, AP Ceramics, AP Drawing and Painting, AP Language, AP Literature, AP Biology, AP Physics, AP Chemistry, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Statistics, AP Human Geography, AP German, AP US Government, AP US History, AP European History, AP Psychology, AP Spanish.


  • AP courses and exams begin the journey through college academic challenges.
  • Collegiate institutions recognize that applicants with AP experience are better prepared for the demands of college.
  • Tuition savings are realized for students whose AP performance awards them college credit.
  • More than 1,400 collegiate institutions award a full years credit (sophomore standing) to students presenting satisfactory grades on a specific number of AP exams.
  • AP students are eligible for honors and other special programs in college.


  • All Ponderosa High School students are encouraged to take at least one Advanced Placement level course in high school.
  • Before committing to multiple Advanced Placement exams, students should consider the following:
  1. Increased amount of homework
  2. Increased rigor of coursework
  3. Time management skills with regard to balancing multiple high-level courses
  4. Extra-curricular activities that might impact ability to fulfill course requirements
  • Advanced Placement courses are college-level courses that may allow students toearn college credit based on AP exam scores when accepted by prospective collegeor university.
  • Advanced Placement courses have weighted grades; however, students might experience lower grades as a result of intense study and homework requirements.
  • Advanced Placement students should expect to complete a minimum of one and a half (1.5) hours of homework per AP class each night. This is in addition to non-AP classes.
  • Students enrolled in Advanced Placement classes at PHS are expected to sit for May exams.
  • Advanced Placement exams cost $89 per exam. $45 late fee per exam can be assessed if sign-up and payment is not made on time.
  • Financial aid is available for exam fees.
  • Many Advanced Placement courses require summer work. See teacher or school website for specifics.
  • Research supports the fact that high schools students enrolled in Advanced Placement courses have a higher success rate during freshman year of college.

AP Courses Expectations and Information

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In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District's Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Aaron Henderson, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, [email protected], 303-387-0127.

Outside Agencies

Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.


Special Education records which have been collected by Douglas County School District related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of special education in the district, must be maintained under state and federal laws for the period of five (5) years after special education services have ended for the student. Special education services end when the student is no longer eligible for services, graduates, or completes his/her educational program at age 21, or moves from the district. This notification is to inform parents/guardians and former students of Douglas County School District's intent to destroy the special education records of students who exited special education services as of June 30, 2016. These records will be destroyed in accordance with state law unless the parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student notifies the school district otherwise. After five years, the records are no longer useful to the district, but may be useful to the parent/guardian or former student in applying for social security benefits, rehabilitation services, college entrance, etc. The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may request a copy of the records by requesting the records at this link ( Douglas County School District Transcripts and Records Requests ).