HAMILTON, NJ --  Hamilton Township's Nottingham High School has earned a prestigious award for expanding their female student’s access to Advanced Placement (AP) computer science courses.  The College Board AP® Computer Science Female Diversity Award was given to Nottingham High for achieving high female representation in AP Computer Science Principles. 

Schools receiving the AP Computer Science Female Diversity Award have achieved either 50 percent or higher female representation in either or both of the AP computer science courses, or the percentage of female computer science examinees meets or exceeds that of the school’s female population. 

“The growth of our AP Computer Science Principles class and increase in the number of female students in the class is due to the dedication of our faculty, guidance counselors, and students," said Hamilton Township School District Superintendent, Dr. Scott Rocco.  "I am proud of the students who have taken this rigorous class to better prepare themselves for computer science opportunities outside of high school, and for the example they are setting for the students who will take the class after them.”

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The introduction of AP Computer Science Principles in 2016 was the largest course launch in AP Program history.   Nearly 100,000 students took the AP CSP exam in 2019, more than doubling participation in three years. During that time, the number of female AP CSP students has far outpaced overall growth, with an increase of 136 percent.  

In 2019, Nottingham High School was one of 639 institutions recognized in the category of AP Computer Science Principles. 

“We’re proud to see the creativity, commitment, and enthusiasm our female students have demonstrated in their study of AP Computer Science Principles,” said Frank Ragazzo, the Nottingham High School principal. “As educators and administrators, we believe a STEM education plays a critical role in fostering a lifelong relationship with learning and setting our female students on a path to success in a 21st century workforce.” 

“Nottingham High School is empowering young women to see themselves as creators, innovators, and problem-solvers,” said Stefanie Sanford, College Board global policy chief. 

Providing female students with access to computer science courses is necessary to ensuring gender parity in high-paying technology jobs and to drive innovation, for their creativity, and competition. A 2014 Google study found that women are more likely to pursue computer science if they are given the opportunity to explore it in high school. 

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