January 27, 2023

Ron DeSantis Administration Rejects Proposed AP African American Studies Class in Florida High Schools



CNN

Republican administration. Ron DeSantis Florida blocks new advanced placement course for high school students African American Studies.

In a Jan. 12 letter to the College Board, the nonprofit organization that oversees the AP curriculum, the Florida Department of Education’s Office of Terminology said the course “contradicts Florida law and lacks significant educational value.”

“If, in the future, the College Board is willing to come back to the table with legal, historically accurate content, FDOE is always willing to reopen the discussion,” the letter stated.

While the letter did not elaborate on what the agency found objectionable in the course content, DeSantis spokesman Brian Griffin told CNN in a statement that it “leaves large, ambiguous gaps that could be filled with additional ideological material, and we will not allow that.”

“As the Department of Education has previously stated, if the College Board revises the curriculum to conform, provide a full curriculum and include historically accurate content, the Department will review the curriculum for approval,” Griffin added.

In a statement to CNN, the College Board declined to directly comment on the decision in Florida, but said “we look forward to bringing this rich and inspiring exploration of African-American history and culture to students across the country.”

Advanced Placement African American courses were rejected following DeSantis’ efforts to reform Florida’s academic curriculum. To limit the teaching of critical race theory. In 2021, the state passed a law banning the teaching of the concept, which examines the history of systemic racism in the United States and its continuing effects. The law also prohibited The New York Times’ Pulitzer Prize-winning project The 1619 Project from reframing American history around the arrival of slave ships on American shores. Last year, DeSantis He also signed a bill The school restricts talking about race with students.

Last year, the College Board announced plans to offer an African American studies class for the first time. The course is being piloted in 60 schools across the country in the 2022-23 academic year, with a target of rolling out the curriculum to all schools in the 2024-25 academic year. According to the College Board website, the first AP African American Studies exam will be administered in the spring of 2025.

Griffin shared with CNN the outline of the curriculum for the class but did not identify which areas the state is struggling with. The 81-page document, titled “Preview” from February 2022, offered a curriculum covering “major topics stretching from the medieval kingdoms of West Africa to the current challenges and achievements of the contemporary movement.”

It was not immediately clear if any schools in Florida are currently in the pilot program. The College Board said the Advanced Placement Program has been working with higher education institutions to develop an African American studies program for a decade.

“Like all new AP courses, AP African American Studies is undergoing a rigorous, multi-year pilot phase, gathering feedback from faculty, students, scholars and policymakers,” the report said. “The process of piloting and revising the course structure is a standard part of any new AP course, and the structures often change significantly as a result. We will publicly release the updated curriculum structure when it is completed, before the class becomes widely available in US high schools.

A Twitter post WednesdayDemocratic State Sen. Shevrin Jones, who is black, noted that Florida offers other cultural AP courses.

“This political extremism and its attack on black history and black people is going to create an entire generation of black children. Jones said.

DeSantis’ move comes as his standing among conservatives has risen nationwide following hot-button cultural issues and his public stance against public health officials and bureaucracy. The international spread of Covid-19. It is said that he Has a potential weight of 2024 Presidential effort.

A group of Republican state legislators in Michigan seeking to build him up for a 2024 run signed a hand-delivered letter to the Florida governor last month asking him to “seek our Republican presidential nomination.”

The letter was signed by 18 GOP members of the Michigan Senate and House, who wrote that DeSantis is “uniquely and exceptionally qualified to provide the leadership and talent that, unfortunately, is missing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.” In closing, they said, “We stand ready and willing to help you win Michigan in 2024.”

The letter contained details First reported by Politico.

This story has been updated with additional details.