School board member John Lee Evans wants to ask parents who can afford it to pay the fees for Advanced Placement exams, instead of letting the school district shoulder the cost.

Evans said San Diego Unified currently pays for students to take the exams, which can cost as much as $86 each according to the website for the College Board, which administers the tests. Advanced Placement classes are linked to the exams and are meant to be as difficult as college courses, though questions have been raised about whether schools have misused the label. Evans is proposing that the school district send out a letter to parents pleading with them to pony up the exam fees themselves so that schools can spend the dollars elsewhere.

“This would be voluntary,” Evans said. “I’ve had many parents come up to me and say, ‘I’ve paid for exams for my children and this is ridiculous, that the school districts are paying for it.’”

There were no details available on the school board website this afternoon about how much it currently costs San Diego Unified to pay for the exams. The proposal is up for a vote tonight at the school board.

EMILY ALPERT

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