New AP classes open a door of opportunities for students


Elaine Kuang

Registration for classes has students questioning what classes they might want to take for next year.

Ibrahim Saxe

Ayala has had a long-standing goal of constantly adding more Advance Placement (AP) classes to its roster as each academic year progresses. This year has been no different for the school administration as they plan to add two more classes at the beginning of the 2023-24 year. 

Ayala’s language department has added Spanish 1 for Spanish speakers, which was created to help incoming freshmen assimilate into a class for those who are native and familiar with the language. Since the United States Census estimates 13% of Chino Hills residents speak Spanish, many see this class as a way to allow native speakers an easier transition into a foreign language class. 

“Then in their second year it will be Spanish 2 for speakers and it will be an honors course,” Spanish 2 teacher Zorayda Contrera Larios said. 

The honors course will engage Spanish speakers who are normally not challenged by the basic Spanish 1 or 2 course. This will improve the transcripts of the students who decide to take the class as it will open a path for more rigorous courses earlier in their high school career. 

“[Next year’s incoming freshman] can take in their junior year either AP Spanish Literature or AP [Spanish] Language so that we have more choices,” Larios said.

However, Spanish is not the only area experiencing a growth in new classes. The science department is also expected to see the start of a new class.

“Physics C gives students a chance to demonstrate the knowledge they gain in calculus outside of their math course,” AP Physics 1 and chemistry teacher Scott Carter said.  

Ayala currently offers AP Physics 1 and AP Physics 2, but if students were to complete the first year requirement of the first physics class, they could go straight into either AP Physics 2 or the newly installed Physics C class.

The College Board recommends Physics C be taught to students as a second year physics course. The Board recommends that 25% of the class time be devoted to labs, but it is unclear if that will be fully implemented here at Ayala. Other recommendations include AP Calculus AB to be a prerequisite and being enrolled in AP Calculus BC during the time they take AP Physics C.

“I am taking Physics C next year for fun because I like physics,” junior Lukas Cao said. “I want to learn about how to apply [this science] on a higher level using calculus-based physics.”

Ayala currently offers 25 AP courses, but that number will increase within the next few years. Right now, Ayala only offers five AP science courses being AP Physics 1, AP Physics 2, AP Chemistry, AP Biology, and AP Environmental Science. 

“[Physics C] will give them a greater variety of science courses to choose from, and it will make their transcripts more competitive,” said Carter.