“Slander”: College Board Blasts DeSantis Attacks on African American Course

The group said that statements have “moved from healthy debate to misinformation.”

AP Photo/Marta Lavandier

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Late on Saturday evening, the College Board responded to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ wave of attacks on education in Florida accusing the state’s Department of Education of criticizing the Advanced Placement African American studies course, and its use in the state of Florida, as a vehicle for the governor’s far-right politics.

The College Board said that it welcomes discourse around its curriculums but said that discussions about AP African American studies had “moved from healthy debate to misinformation.” The letter followed a previous one that the organization sent on Tuesday which was more tepid and less confrontational.

“We deeply regret not immediately denouncing the Florida Department of Education’s slander, magnified by the DeSantis administration’s subsequent comments, that African American Studies ‘lacks educational value,’” the College Board said in their new letter published on Saturday night.

DeSantis has criticized the new AP course in his continued tirades against social causes championing marginalized and historically victimized groups like LGBTQ people and racial minorities. He has called the program “woke” and said that it wouldn’t be accepted without revisions.

In their letter, College Board clarified that “[w]e had no negotiations about the content of this course with Florida or any other state, nor did we receive any requests, suggestions, or feedback,” despite Florida officials claiming credit for changes to the course. 

According to Politico, the AP course is under review for use in Florida next year.

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