This movie was shown in our district courtesy of our PTO. The re-cap in the local paper confirmed what a friend told me about the event: the discussion hosted afterward quickly ended up in favor of less AP classes. Parents wanted to ditch AP and Honors class in favor of more vocational and elective type classes. This would be more an annoyance than a serious concern if I didn't live in a district that has already eliminated gifted ed and doesn't support ability grouping until middle school. Eliminating AP classes is just one more way to take away opportunities for the motivated, the gifted, and/or the plain 'ole hard-working kid.The peril to AP classes is a real worry to me. My district would clearly like to eliminate them (although I'm guessing they'd be interested in replacing AP with IB).
However, I do think the message may be partially right. Our kids are working too hard-- they're spinning their wheels for all the wrong reasons: poor curricula, lack of ability grouping, constructivist classrooms, lack of pedagogical content, and other issues often discussed on this website. It's really hard to waste time of a group project or power point presentation and then wonder why the SAT and ACT questions are so challenging, why you now need to hire a tutor, or why you're going to have to give up that dream of becoming an engineer because you never developed the requisite skills. Not having the proper foundation means you're going to have to work really, really hard to make things happen... and sometimes, it's just so difficult you just give up.
I wish I'd filmed the three college presentations we've attended. It's all AP all the time; colleges want to see AP courses on transcripts.
They make no bones about it.