Our family's contribution to the story focused, appropriately, on non-traditional ways to gain the necessary knowledge, though Melanie's comment that the important point is the education, not the test, didn't make it to print:
Some parents help their home-schooled children patch together innovative self-study plans to prepare for AP tests.
When John Calvin Young of Smithville [sic], N.C., wanted to study for the AP U.S. government and politics exam, his mother, Melanie Young, selected a textbook and study aids. But they both believe the youth’s involvement in two campaigns for Republican candidates during the fall of 2004 and other political activities helped him score a 5 on the exam.
"One of the harder parts of the AP government stuff for me was remembering the details behind the legislative process or behind specific legislation from the past," said Mr. Young.
The fact John was working for Republican candidates is beside the point, actually. They tried to keep the interview non-partisan, but the writer grilled it out of them.
On the other hand, a Harris poll last month indicated that
Republicans are more likely than Democrats to know someone who currently homeschools their child (40% vs. 29%).so maybe there's something significant to that, after all. It doesn't affect the exam, though.