Arkansas Removes AP African American Studies Course 48 Hours Before School Year Begins

While students across the country prepare to return to the fall semester of school, the state of Arkansas department of education has made a change to the curriculum just two days before the official school year started. It announced that a new Advanced Placement course on African American history will not count toward any course credit for the 2023-24 school year.

According to the Arkansas Times, the Arkansas Department of Education told high school educators via a phone call that the Advanced Placement course on African American history would not be recognized for course credit in the coming school year. The educators were also informed that, unlike AP classes offered throughout the semester, the state would not cover the $90 cost of an end-of-year test for students to qualify for college course credit.

There was no explanation for the changes, and according to the media outlet, phone calls were not picked up, nor did the spokesperson, Kimberly Mundell, respond to inquiries. There were questions about why the course was listed, yet, 48 hours before the start of the school year, it was removed without explanation.

Public education watchdog Jim Ross was one of the people questioning why this was done, noting that the Advanced Placement course on European History is still being offered. He called the elimination of the coursework for credit “racism, pure and simple.”

The department of education’s move is causing issues for students, who now must decide on whether to take the course with no credit and be made pay for the test afterward, or to choose another course to fulfill whatever coursework is needed to graduate.