Feb 14, 2023 - Politics & Policy

New Jersey to expand AP African American Studies curriculum

Phil Murphy, governor of New Jersey, speaks on Jan. 10. Photo: Aristide Economopoulos/Bloomberg via Getty Images

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) announced Tuesday that the state is expanding its Advanced Placement African American Studies classes.

Details: The AP class will go from being taught at one New Jersey high school to 26 during the 2023-2024 academic year. 

  • The AP African American studies course is currently in a two-year pilot program in 60 high schools nationwide, with plans to expand it to hundreds more schools in the fall.

The big picture: New Jersey's expansion contrasts Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' (R) ongoing feud with the College Board over the new course, which he claims teaches critical race theory, a college-level framework that's often conflated with general teachings on systemic racism.

What they're saying: "As governors like Florida’s Ron DeSantis prioritize political culture wars ahead of academic success, New Jersey will proudly teach our kids that Black History is American History," Murphy said in a statement.

  • "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," he added.
  • DeSantis' office did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Go deeper: Here are some key cuts from the AP African American Studies curriculum

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