President Biden railed against Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education after the state’s rejection, via letter to The College Board, of an AP African American Studies course said to violate state education law.
The letter, issued on Jan. 12 and obtained by ABC News, claimed that the course was, "inexplicably contrary to Florida law and significantly lacks educational value.”
Biden expressed outrage over the move, saying he felt students, "should have access" to any class they desire, according to the the Daily Mail
Ironically, critics claimed that Biden was inadvertently supporting the very idea that DeSantis has been working to promote.
"Biden doesn't know it, but he just endorsed school choice," FreedomWorks posted on their Twitter page.
— FreedomWorks (@FreedomWorks) February 17, 2023
During a news conference on on Jan. 23 at Duval Charter School at Baymeadows in Jacksonville, Florida, DeSantis provided detail on why the class was rejected.
During the news conference, DeSantis exclaimed that "In Florida our education standards do not prevent, but require teaching Black history ... that’s part of our core curriculum. This (AP African American studies) was a separate course for advanced placement credit,” according to First Coast News,
He further detailed that the course was one on "indoctrination, not education."
"This course, what are one of the lessons about? Queer theory," DeSantis said. "Who would say that an important part of Black history is queer theory? That is somebody pushing an agenda on our kids," DeSantis said.
DeSantis also called out the class as one that pushes a political agenda, saying, "That's the wrong side of the line for Florida standards. When you try to use Black history to shoehorn in queer theory, you are clearly trying to use that for political purposes."
"I also think it’s not fair that somehow abolishing prisons is somehow linked to Black experience, that’s what Black people want" DeSantis said. "I don’t think that’s true at all. I think they want law and order just like anybody else wants law and order. That’s ideology being used under the guise of history," he said.
Florida's DOE said they'd reconsider the AP classes if those classes were rewritten in such a way that they aligned with Florida state law.
The College Board has openly claimed that they did not receive requested feedback on why the courses were rejected, according to The Daily Mail.
The decision of Florida's Department of Education sparked the ire of a coalition of Black faith leaders, who insisted on having a meeting with the DeSantis administration as a result of the decision to reject the course, according to Politico.
“When you devalue my history, and say it lacks educational merit, that is demeaning to us,” Rev. R. B. Holmes, Jr., pastor of Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Tallahassee, told Political last month. “And it may be a problem in messaging, maybe they didn’t mean it that way. It already has national attention.”
A coalition of students, educators, lawmakers and faith leaders held a rally last month at Florida's Capitol in Tallahassee in connection to the issue.
The College board released a revised curriculum on Feb.1 in which they removed some of the content to which Governor DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education initially rejected.