Opinion: Move to shut out College Board would hurt students


Gage Skidmore

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s push to separate public schools from the College Board is contrary to students’ success.

Rachael Bonneau, Staff Writer

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s push to separate public schools from the College Board is contrary to students’ success. 

The College Board is responsible for writing and conducting the testing for Advanced Placement classes and for administering the PSAT and SAT exams. According to the Washington Post, DeSantis has pushed to remove all College Board affiliations in Florida over the College Board’s new AP African American Studies course. 

DeSantis and other Florida Republicans have been criticizing the course, charging that it makes use of Critical Race Theory. The NAACP defines Critical Race Theory as “an academic and legal framework that denotes that systemic racism is part of American society.”

There should be no issue with the framework of Critical Race Theory – when it is supported by real historical examples. According to Time, the AP course was to explore history from a different lens and aim to examine how events have affected Black Americans in ways that are often overlooked. 

Amid the controversy, the College Board revised the course, removing topics such as the Black Lives Matter Movement, Black feminism, and queer intersectionality. 

Other opponents of the AP course, including governors from Virginia and Arkansas, have followed DeSantis in re-evaluating the relationship between the College Board and public education.

The College Board has a large bearing on American schools, offering most of the opportunities for college-bound students to challenge themselves. 

In terms of testing, the ACT is accepted just as much as the SAT in test-required colleges. However, there are few accessible alternatives to AP classes.

Some high schools offer International Baccalaureate (IB) classes, which are comparable to AP classes. Both are an advanced level of instruction and could qualify a student for college credit after passing a test. 

However, few schools offer the most advanced level of IB classes when compared to AP classes. Removing the AP courses without ensuring there is a replacement ready would cause a gap in advanced education for students.

Replacing the College Board is far from impossible; there are alternatives. Yet wanting to remove it at a legislative level because of a moral disagreement is wrong.

History is not one-dimensional, and classes showing a side contrary to one’s political belief should not change education for an entire generation.