Welcome to the AAPLE Academy Application. Thank you for your interest in the Accelerated Academic Program for Leadership and Enrichment (AAPLE). Our motto Lead, Serve, Excel succinctly describes the Academy focus. It is important that applicants have a strong interest in organizational leadership, civic leadership, and leadership in the classroom. The AAPLE Academy seeks students from varying social, economic, and cultural backgrounds. Our aim is to admit a diverse group of high achieving student leaders interested in leadership theory and practice and making a deep impact on their community.

The AAPLE Academy’s academic pathway is very challenging. It is very important that you consider this and the time commitment involved before applying. We cannot stress enough the importance of students and parents reviewing the program requirements on our Academy website and having meaningful discussions regarding the time commitment, focus on leadership and service, and academic balance required by Academy participants.

Due to the popularity of the Academy, there will be more applicants than spaces available. Please know in advance that we are expecting a high number of applicants representing all District junior high schools and many of the surrounding private schools. Please understand prior to applying that in most cases, those who do not get admitted to the academy will submit good comprehensive applications, however, when compared against all applications, some applicants will not be admitted. The admissions panel will evaluate each student’s application in a holistic manner with the intent of finding the best match for the AAPLE Academy. We strongly recommend that all applicants become familiar with the many other amazing academies, activities, and opportunities available at SMHS.


Math and English Readiness Requirements:

English and Math Courses:  Students must be enrolled in CCCS Math 8 and English 8 (or higher Math and English course) in eighth grade.  If the applicant is not currently enrolled in a SBUSD junior high school, the student must be enrolled in equivalent Math and English course levels.  Due to the rigor of AAPLE Academy courses and recommended course sequence, it is strongly recommended that students possess the drive and motivation to balance multiple Honors and Advanced Placement courses grades 9-12.

CAASPP Scores: AAPLE Academy courses and the recommended academic pathway are very challenging. Students applying to AAPLE must demonstrate appropriate Math and English readiness for the AAPLE Academy course sequence. For minimum eligibility students must:

  • Score 2567 or above in the “Standard Met” score range on the California Assessment of Student Performance and
    Progress (CAASPP) math exam taken in 7th grade.
  • Score 2552 or above in the “Standard Met” score range on the California Assessment of Student Performance and
    Progress (CAASPP) English exam (ELA) taken in 7th grade.

Students who did not take the CAASPP exam in 7th grade can demonstrate Math and English readiness by scoring in the 75th percentile or above on a standardized, norm-referenced test.

AAPLE Academy applicants are not ranked by their Mathematics or English scores. Scores are used to determine eligibility to apply only.

In-person Essay Requirement:

All applicants must attend an in-person essay on one of the dates and times provided by the Academy.  The in-person essay will be administered in the AAPLE Academy building, room i5, at San Marcos High School.  Students should be prepared to write 1 essay, approximately 650 words in length, on a computer provided by the Academy.  This should not take longer than 1 hour to complete.  To schedule an in-person essay date and time:


Application Information:

  • The application window will close on January 13th, 2019 @ 11:59PM. Late applications will not be accepted.
  • You cannot save your answers and come back to them. We suggest that you write your essay using word processing software on your desktop and then cut and paste your final draft into the appropriate text-box. Please strictly follow the formatting requirements provided below.
  • Once you have pressed “Submit”, your application is final. There will be no exceptions. You may only submit one application. You cannot edit, add, or resubmit a new application. Please, double check and proofread your application before you submit it.
  • It is important to strictly follow application instructions and complete all required sections of the application.

Intradistrict Transfers:

Very important! If you live outside of the SMHS attendance area, you must apply for an intradistrict transfer by the deadline provided by the Santa Barbara Unified School District. For more information about the intradistrict transfer process, CLICK HERE.

AAPLE Academy Application:

AAPLE Academy Application (English) 

AAPLE Academy Application (Spanish)






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