Experts warn more AP courses could be banned in Florida
Experts are worried about the disruption that changes to Florida educational policy might be causing as a new school year begins.
An AP Psychology class was briefly banned in Florida last week, before it was reinstated.
In a letter late Friday night, Department of Education Commissioner Manny Diaz said AP Psych can now be taught, “in its entirety."
But Rollins College education professor Jenni Sanguiliano Lonski said she’s worried other courses could be on the chopping block thanks to the state’s Parental Rights in Education law.
“I think that there's going to be some concerns over AP Literature, AP Lang, how AP U.S. History is going to be taught simply because of materials used in those courses," said Sanguiliano Lonski.
Sanguiliano Lonski said changes before the start of a school year can make it hard for kids to get the college credits they need.
“Since this isn't a core course, this shouldn't impact anyone's graduation. But it does add a lot of stress particularly in Senior year, of, you have this class you're ready to take, you have a schedule already created and now everything has to be shuffled.”
AP African American History has been banned outright in Florida, and for a few days last week, AP Psych was also banned in the state over its themes of gender identity and sexuality.
Florida's Parental Rights in Education, or Don't Say Gay law prohibits teachers from discussing gender identity and sexuality in grades K-12 in most cases.
The majority of Central Florida schools start the year on August 10, and will be juggling new African American history standards, restrictions on preferred pronouns, and policies that make it easier to ban books.
The reversal on AP Psych comes as Lake County Schools announced it will reinstate the book And Tango Makes Three to school libraries. The book tells the story of two male penguins who adopt a baby penguin.
The book's author and parents in the district sued the district to return the book to school shelves.