HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — The new school year is starting with confusion for Florida high school students signed up for Advanced Placement Psychology. There’s controversy over a portion of the course dealing with sexuality.
Initially, leaders with the Florida Department of Education said the section of the curriculum needed to be excluded because it violates the Parental Rights in Education law. The College Board, a nonprofit overseeing AP courses, responded by saying students could not receive college credit if portions were excluded from the course.
The back-and-forth left local school district scrambling to find a solution. Many swapped the AP course for an alternative psychology curriculum.
“It’s very nerve-wracking because I’m going to be going to school on Thursday not exactly 110% prepared for my three psychology classes,” said Ramsey Aziz, a teacher at St. Petersburg High School.
“To be informed that, oh, seven days the class that you might’ve chosen months ago, in my case, is not going to be available anymore is shocking,” said Gabi Fabozzi, a student.
As of Wednesday morning, the FDOE released a statement telling districts the whole AP Psychology course can be taught in a manner that is “age and developmentally appropriate.” Multiple local school districts said despite the new guidance from the FDOE they would not be using the AP Psychology curriculum.
In Hillsborough County, leaders told NBC News they’d be teaching the Advanced International Certificate of Education psychology class. The same option will be offered to high schoolers in Manatee County public schools. Pinellas County previously announced they’d be switching to the AICE curriculum as well.