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Academic accolades add up in Norman Public Schools

Norman Public Schools continue to earn academic accolades. And, with Oklahoma’s most National Merit Scholar semifinalists, two unique Advanced Placement programs and steadily increasing ACT scores, it’s easy to see why.

“We work hard to provide innovative opportunities for our students to excel,” said NPS Superintendent Dr. Joe Siano. “Our teachers, administrators and staff are committed to doing what it takes to help students prepare for their next step, whether it be college, business, career tech or the military.”

Twenty four students have qualified as semifinalists for the 2015 National Merit Scholarship program - more than any other district in the state. These students, from both high schools,  have achieved PSAT scores that rank among the highest in the nation.

The district also offers Advanced Placement (AP) Capstone programs at both high schools. The innovative diploma program provides students with an opportunity to engage in rigorous scholarly practice of the core academic skills necessary for successful college completion. There are only two other schools in Oklahoma that offer the program.

There’s also a unique program for students who are in traditional classes but demonstrate potential for advanced studies. The Advanced Via Individual Determination program, known as AVID, provides academic and emotional support to help students develop the skills and confidence necessary to later succeed in AP courses.

Norman’s students are also excelling in the college-entrance exam, as students’ ACT scores remain well above state and national averages. Student scores have steadily increased the past few years, and last year, the district’s average ACT composite score was 23 - nearly three full points above the state average.

Newsweek also has recognized Norman High School as one of “America’s Top High Schools.” The school was recognized for preparing students for college and “beating the odds” to help students with economic disadvantages overcome obstacles.