The College Board announced Tuesday that it would release a new framework for the Advanced Placement course in African American Studies that Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration had barred from being offered in Florida high schools.
The nonprofit organisation in charge of the national Advanced Placement programme announced on Feb. 1 that it would “release the official framework” for an AP African American Studies course that has been in the works since March.
This month, the DeSantis administration rejected the course in a letter to the College Board, saying, “As presented, the content of this course is inexplicably contrary to Florida law and significantly lacks educational value.”
A College Board spokesperson did not respond to questions about whether the change was directly related to Florida’s rejection of the course.
The organisation stated that it was piloting the course in 60 high schools and that it routinely gathers feedback before expanding its offerings.
“The official course framework incorporates this feedback and defines what students will encounter on the AP Exam for college credit and placement,” according to the College Board on Tuesday.
The Florida Education Department, which had previously opposed the curriculum, welcomed the revisions, even though they had not yet been made public.
“We are pleased that the College Board has recognised that the originally submitted course curriculum is problematic, and we are encouraged to see the College Board express a willingness to amend,” said Alex Lanfranconi, an agency spokesperson. “AP courses are standardised throughout the country, and as a result of Florida’s strong stance against identity politics and indoctrination, students across the country will have access to a historically accurate, unbiased course.”
Lanfranconi stated that he expects content on topics “that violate our laws,” such as critical race theory, Black queer studies, and intersectionality, to be removed.
DeSantis, who was re-elected in November and is considered a possible presidential candidate in 2024, criticised the inclusion of material about queer theory as recently as Monday.
“Who would argue that queer theory is an important part of Black history? Someone is pushing an agenda on our children “According to DeSantis. “So, when you look and see things like intersectionality and the abolition of prisons, that’s a political agenda. That’s on the wrong side of the law in Florida.”
DeSantis has prioritised education and other social issues in his administration. Last year, he signed legislation known as the “Stop WOKE Act,” which limits how race and gender are discussed in schools.
The White House slammed DeSantis’ opposition to the AP course last week, calling it “incomprehensible.”
“If you think about the study of Black Americans,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said during a briefing. “AP European History was not blocked.”