It’s not easy to be admitted into Stanford University, which this year accepted just 4.7 percent of applicants. It’s even less likely to earn a perfect score on an Advanced Placement exam.

Carlos Bustos accomplished both feats.

The standout Santa Monica High School student was recognized by the local Board of Education during a meeting earlier this month, and the improbability of his achievements was not lost on district officials as they congratulated him.

“I don’t know if you call that ‘rare’ — I don’t know what the word is to describe it,” said Ellen Edeburn, the district’s director of secondary curriculum.

“Rare” would probably suffice. Bustos was one of just 55 students in the world to earn every point possible on the AP Spanish language exam this year, Edeburn said.

Of the roughly 4.5 million AP exams taken by U.S. public high school students last year, only 322 warranted perfect scores. (That’s about 0.007 percent, in case you’re wondering.)

Bustos, a product of the district’s language immersion program, thanked the teachers and people along the way who have provided him with a good upbringing and a well-rounded education.

“It’s not easy to get where I am without the love and support I’ve had,” said Bustos, who will start at Stanford this fall. “I’m going to cry. … To be in the immersion program for the past 12 years, it’s been such an honor.”

Bustos’ accomplishment comes as SMMUSD considers ways to to improve its language immersion offerings. The district recently proposed creating a new language coordinator position.

Parents and other stakeholders have praised the dual-immersion pathway at Edison Language Academy but lamented the drop-off in programming at John Adams Middle School and Santa Monica High School.

“We haven’t been able to give it the attention it deserves,” Terry Deloria, the district’s assistant superintendent for educational services, said last month. “Once you get to JAMS and Samohi, there isn’t the same level of support and visibility.”

Bustos, then, was seen as an example of the program’s potential.

“This is a proud day not only for Carlos and his mom, but for our entire Spanish Immersion Pathway,” Samohi principal Eva Mayoral said in a press release. “Today we celebrate Carlos’ achievement as a full SMMUSD accomplishment.”

AP Spanish teacher Claudia Bautista, who serves as the high school’s immersion chair, said Bustos not only aimed high on his own tests but also made sure other students had opportunities to succeed as well.

“Carlos is one of the hardest-working and most eloquent writers I have ever had the pleasure of working with in class,” she said. “Carlos helped get 20 scholarships for low-income students who could not pay for their AP exams through the AP Pals Club. I can’t wait to see his contribution to our society in the future.”

Added Mayoral: “I am thrilled with Carlos’ accomplishment. Carlos is the very definition of phenomenal. Throughout the six years I have known him he has never been driven solely by grades; he has earned straight ‘A’ grades in every of the most rigorous courses we have to offer here at Samohi and John Adams Middle School because he is invested in mastery.”

Last year, 876 Samohi students took a total of 1,783 AP exams in 21 subjects. A passing score of 3 or higher was earned on 1,330 tests.

“We congratulate all our students who earned college credit and took on the rigor of AP exams,” Mayoral said.

jeff@www.smdp.com