Edison High School junior Jesus Cortés not only received a perfect score -- 5 of 5 -- on his Advanced Placement Spanish Language and Culture test, he is just one of 108 students in the world to receive all points possible on the exam.
"My initial reaction to the score was definitively disbelief," Jesus said. "I was just so surprised, but I was also very happy."
Jesus has taken advantage of the numerous opportunities to take AP classes at Edison High, taking two AP classes during his first two years of high school and passing both tests and is taking two more AP classes now.
On Nov. 16, Edison celebrated Jesus and all Edison students who have achieved a 5 on AP tests this year.
AP classes give students a chance to challenge themselves academically and can reduce the number of college classes students have to take and decrease college expenses. Students who pass the CollegeBoard-administered exams offered to students once they complete an AP class may be able to obtain college credit if they score a 3 or better.
Fresno Unified has stepped up its AP offerings for students, from 226 AP course sections in 2011-12 to 271 currently.
Carol Padilla, Jesus' AP Spanish Language and Culture teacher last year, said Jesus is a self-motivated students driven by curiosity to learn more.
"Jesus takes ownership for his learning and comes to class fully prepared, ready to engage, ready to support his classmates, and ready to take advantage of what his education can offer," Padilla said. "I am confident that Jesus will be successful in his studies and his career because he is dedicated and always does his best."
Although Jesus clearly excels at Spanish, his favorite subject is math. He has been pondering what to major in and where to go to college, but has not decided yet.
"I do think that it might be something that involves math, science, or technology. I also have thought that I would like to attend a university here in California, as there are a lot of great options," Jesus said.
Jesus attended King and Manchester GATE elementary schools and Cooper Academy for middle school. He also plays soccer and enjoys watching sports, playing video games, watching TV shows and movies, and spending time with my family or friends.