Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced Tuesday he would expand access to the new AP African American Studies while taking shots at Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for pushing “political culture wars,” according to a press release.
The new course proposed by College Board garnered attention after the DeSantis administration rejected it for teaching tenets of Critical Race Theory and queer studies. College Board has since revised and released a new framework for the course that removed the controversial subjects, however maintains that it did so without political pressure. (RELATED: DeSantis Admin Requests Additional Information On Now-Revised AP African American Studies Course)
The course will be offered in 26 New Jersey high schools during the 2023-2024 academic year, according to the press release. The course, which is in a pilot stage, is currently offered in one New Jersey school out of 60 testing the curriculum nationwide.
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) February 14, 2023
“The expansion of AP African American Studies in New Jersey will grant our students the opportunity to learn about the innumerable ways in which Black Americans have shaped and strengthened our country,” Murphy said in the press release.
He then decried DeSantis for putting “political culture wars ahead of academic success” and assured that “New Jersey will proudly teach our kids that Black History is American History.”
“While the DeSantis Administration stated that AP African American Studies ‘significantly lacks educational value’, New Jersey will stand on the side of teaching our full history,” Murphy said, according to the press release. “We will set an example for the nation by demonstrating to our future leaders that our country is the greatest in the world because it is a work in progress, a promise, and an ideal we strive to achieve.”
Murphy’s statement mirrors an early announcement made by Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who told College Board in late January that his state would not approve the course if it made Florida’s requested revisions. The changes were made Feb. 1.
“One Governor should not have the power to dictate the facts of U.S. history,” Pritzker wrote in his letter. “In Illinois, we reject any curriculum modifications designed to appease extremists like the Florida Governor and his allies.”
Murphy, DeSantis and the College Board did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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