TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration blocked a new Advanced Placement (AP) course on African American studies from high schools in the state.
In a letter to the College Board, the company who oversees AP courses, the Florida Department of Education claimed the course as it is currently written violates the “Stop WOKE Act” and is historically inaccurate.
“As presented, the content of this course is inexplicably contrary to Florida law and significantly lacks educational value,” the letter read. “In the future, should College Board be willing to come back to the table with lawful, historically accurate content, (the education department) will always be willing to reopen the discussion.”
The Department of Education did not elaborate or provide examples of unlawful or historically inaccurate content within the course.
In a statement to the Associated Press, the College Board explained the African American studies class is still in development and its content is subject to change with input from a variety of sources.
“Like all new AP courses, AP African American Studies is undergoing a rigorous, multi-year pilot phase, collecting feedback from teachers, students, scholars and policymakers,” the College Board said.
The College Board described the the course as interdisciplinary, featuring elements of literature, arts, humanities, political science, geography and science. The program will be tested at 60 schools before it is offered nationwide.
“The process of piloting and revising course frameworks is a standard part of any new AP course, and frameworks often change significantly as a result,” the College Board’s statement read.
Signed into law last year, what the state refers to as the Stop WOKE Act – formally titled the Individual Freedom Act – is a ban on teaching Critical Race Theory in Florida’s schools. It applies to all public institutions in the state, including K-12 schools, public colleges and universities.
The law bans instruction indicating members of one race are inherently racist or should feel guilt for past actions committed by others of the same race.
A federal judge recently ruled DeSantis’ administration acted lawfully when asking state colleges and universities to conduct surveys and “provide a comprehensive list of all staff, programs and campus activities related to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and critical race theory.” The surveys were due Jan. 13.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.