AP Exam Waivers

Advanced Placement examinations are taken each spring at the end of year-long courses that are designed to provide college-level curricula. Many colleges and universities grant credits and/or advanced placement based on AP scores.

Advanced Placement (AP) Exam Reduced Fee for Qualifying Students

Following a year of record growth in the number of students taking Advanced Placement exams, the Council on K-12 re-emphasized their commitment to increasing equitable student access to post-secondary credentials by approving a proposed supplemental FY18 budget and FY19 budget which included subsidizing Spring 2018 and Spring 2019 AP exams taken by students qualifying for free or reduced price lunch. These costs were previously covered under a federal grant which was eliminated under the Every Student Succeeds Act. These budgets now head to the Governor and then General Assembly for their review.

Spring 2018 Exams 

RIDE is committed to subsidizing each exam taken by a qualifying student by $38 in the 2017-18 school year. The College Board provides a $30 fee reduction per exam for students with financial need. For each AP Exam taken with a fee reduction, the school forgoes its $9 rebate, resulting in a cost of $53 per exam for the student. The RIDE funding will cover $38 for each AP test taken by a qualifying student. Therefore, qualifying students are asked to contribute $15 for each AP test they take.  RIDE’s emphasis on Advanced Placement is part of an overall strategy to ensure that all students are provided with rigorous, challenging learning opportunities that empower them to think about the future and explore career options. This important program helps to break down the financial barriers that exist when pursuing advanced coursework.

Spring 2019 Exams 

Please note that the subsidy approved by the Council for 2019 exams is subject to the Governor and General Assembly’s approval of the budget. For this reason, though RIDE is hopeful this particular program will continue to be funded, RIDE recommends that schools budget to cover this subsidy for qualifying students in Spring 2019 and beyond.

Who qualifies?

A student is eligible for the AP Exam Fee Reduction if the student qualifies for free or reduced lunch, was enrolled in the AP class/classes for the 2017-2018 school year, and will be taking an AP exam in Spring 2018.

What the school must do:

The process for ordering tests has not changed. As a reminder, A brief summary is included below. For more detailed instructions, please see the College Board's website.

Before the AP Exam: Schools are required to keep all records of student enrollment in AP courses and qualification for free/reduced lunch in the event that the USDOE audits RIDE. It is suggested that you maintain an up to date list with students who qualify for the AP Fee Reduction and their corresponding AP class/classes.

  • Fill in the "Option 1" oval on qualifying students' AP Exam answer sheets.
  • Enter the total number of exams (not students) that qualify for the fee reduction when generating your invoice online.
  • AP Coordinators must send $15 to the AP Program for each AP Exam, including AP Research and AP Seminar Exams, taken by qualifying students.
  • AP Coordinators must submit a copy of their invoice to RIDE. 
  • Maintain a list of students who qualify for the AP Exam Fee Waiver; record each individual exam that the student is taking.


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