College Board Will Change AP African American Studies Curriculum… Again

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Alexa Schwerha Contributor
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An Advanced Placement (AP) pilot course dedicated to African American studies will be revised again after state governors across the country argued whether or not the content was appropriate, the College Board, which oversees AP courses, announced on Monday.

AP African American Studies was rejected by Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration for originally including topics such as queer theory, and was revised on Feb. 1 to eliminate those sections and readings from prominent critical race theorists. The new changes, which were not detailed but are expected to become public in the coming months, will be driven by the development committee and “experts,” according to the College Board. (RELATED: DeSantis Admin Requests Additional Information On Now-Revised AP African American Studies Course)

“We are committed to providing an unflinching encounter with the facts and evidence of African American history and culture. To achieve that commitment, we must listen to the diversity of voices within the field,” Monday’s announcement read. “The development committee and experts within AP remain engaged in building a course and exam that best reflect this dynamic discipline. Those scholars and experts have decided they will make changes to the latest course framework during this pilot phase.”

The newly revised course will mirror an introductory-level college class, according to the announcement. Interest in the course increased significantly, and the pilot program was expanded from 60 high schools during its first year to 800 schools in the 2023-2024 academic year.

It is estimated that 16,000 students will take the course in the new academic year, according to the College Board.

“Every day, there are more stories about how this course is opening minds and changing lives,” the announcement read. “Regardless of how many students take this course, each one of those students should have access to the full breadth and beauty of this discipline.”

Several states including Virginia, Mississippi, North Dakota and Arkansas followed Florida’s example and demanded a review of the AP African American Studies course to determine whether the course content violates any state laws. Two Democratic states praised the course and slammed DeSantis’ response to the course as politically motivated.

One Governor should not have the power to dictate the facts of U.S. history. In Illinois, we reject any curriculum modifications designed to appease extremists like the Florida Governor and his allies,” Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said in January when he warned the College Board not to revise the original framework.

Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said on Feb. 14 that the AP course would be expanded to 26 public schools in the state and accused DeSantis of advancing a “culture war” over “academic success.”

“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 had said.

The new framework will “ensure” students enrolled in the course will “get the most holistic possible introduction to African American Studies,” according to the announcement.

The College Board did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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