Nearly 63 percent of all Advanced Placement tests taken by San Diego County high school students in 2017 were passed, allowing them to earn college credits early. That’s almost 7 percentage points higher than the state average.

Why this matters

Scores students receive from taking AP classes can be used by college officials in deciding who to admit. The classes also allow high school students to earn college credits.

The pass rate was almost identical to the previous year, when 62.6 percent of the AP tests taken in the county were passed.

For 2017, the Poway, San Dieguito and Carlsbad school districts had the highest AP pass rates in the county, while the Warner, Julian and Mountain Empire school districts had the lowest.

AP exams are offered to high school students in more than 30 subjects, including calculus, biology, English and art, but the availability of each course varies by school. The yearlong classes are designed to offer college-level curriculum and exams so students can earn college credit in a related course.

In San Diego County, 33,836 students took more than 65,000 AP tests in 2017. That’s about 28 percent of all students in grades 10 through 12. Tests scored 3 or higher — based on a scale from 1 to 5 — were considered passing.

inewsource has created searchable databases of AP and SAT test results for California students by school that allow students, parents, educators and others to compare performance.

San Diego County high schools with the highest AP pass rates

  • Canyon Crest Academy (San Dieguito High School District) — 93%
  • Scripps Ranch High (San Diego Unified School District) — 92.2%
  • Del Norte High (Poway Unified School District) — 92%
  • Westview High (Poway Unified) — 91.9%
  • Mt. Everest Academy (San Diego Unified) — 90.3%

San Diego County high schools with the lowest AP pass rates

  • Julian High (Julian Union High School District) — 18.2%
  • San Diego Science and Technology (San Diego Unified) — 18.9%
  • Crawford High (San Diego Unified) — 21.1%
  • Lincoln High (San Diego Unified) — 21.4%
  • Southwest Senior High (Sweetwater Union High School District) — 27.2%

Note: Percentages show the amount of high school students who scored a 3 or higher on the Advanced Placement exam for the 2016-17 school year.

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Megan Wood was a multimedia journalist for inewsource. To contact inewsource with questions, tips or corrections, email