H-F’s Success with AP courses draws visitors from Hawaii

Homewood-Flossmoor High School recently welcomed educators from Hawaii’s Mililani High School in Oahu and Farrington High School in Honolulu during a special visit to the Chicago area.

H-F was one of five high schools the educators visited the week of Nov. 17 for a look at how some of the top schools are using advanced placement and gifted programs.

Dr. Nancy Spaniak, H-F’s director of curriculum, instruction and professional development, hosted the visit. She said she was delighted to hear the positive responses from the guests on how H-F challenges students and works to improve its curriculum.

“What seemed to impact them the most, however, was the conduct of H-F students whom they described as being exceedingly polite and personable,” she said. 

The Farrington High School’s principal, vice principal, curriculum coordinator, AP English teacher and registrar were especially interested in learning how H-F has increased its AP enrollment by 52 percent during the past 10 years while still ensuring that more than 70 percent of the AP exams taken by H-F students score a 3 or higher on the 5-point scale. 

The Mililani High School principal, curriculum coordinator, registrar, accelerated studies coordinator, a librarian and math, science and social studies department heads were especially interested in H-F’s four-year Gifted Academy. The academy immerses academically talented freshmen and sophomores in a rigorous schedule of honors and AP classes prior to entering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme their junior year.

Administrators from both schools were also very interested in H-F’s Project Lead the Way science, technology, engineering and math courses, as well as the variety of supports – from seven-day-a-week tutoring to reading and study skills courses – that H-F offers to help students manage the academic demands of rigorous course loads.


H-F High School



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