HB2292 Does NOT Do Away With Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Dual Credit or Other Similar Courses. (Remember that BLUE words are “hot” links to the source material.)
It is being erroneously reported that HB2292 is intending to “do away with AP or IB classes.”
These courses are mentioned in only one line of a seven page bill: Sec. 4 (c) If advanced placement, international baccalaureate, dual credit or other similar courses and tests are administered to public high school students, they shall be aligned with Kansas curriculum standards in effect pursuant to subsection (b).
Presuming Kansas stands behind whatever standards it has put in place, (i.e. Common Core, non-Common Core), if any AP, IB or other similar courses being taught in public schools, and funded by public monies, were found to be contrary to the standards in place, would those courses be taught? Presently, if the AP classes and tests were teaching Creationism as fact and the only true explanation for human existence, wouldn’t this be viewed as contrary to Kansas standards and be required to be removed from instruction?
Historically, the College Board’s AP courses have always been fine because they did not conflict with, but rather were strongly aligned with states’ differing standards all across the country. If the College Board had to change the courses in order to align to the Common Core standards, then this would appear to only validate the fact that the Common Core standards are dramatically different from previous states’ standards.
If the AP courses have been changed so that they are ONLY compatible with Common Core standards, and not varying states’ standards as has previously been the case, then it appears that the advanced courses and tests have been changed in a way to force states to have in place the Common Core standards. The issue would seem to be the new path being taken by those responsible for the advanced courses and tests, not states’ standards. (Read further in this article for information about legislative action being taken in other states regarding the AP US History course.) Throughout the history of education and advanced courses, the advance courses have strongly aligned with states’ standards all across the country.
If something were to happen to AP or other advanced courses, it would be because of the direction taken by the creators of those courses, not Kansas having its own standards.
HB2292 does not remove AP, IB, dual credit courses from Kansas. As you can see, it is consistent in requiring that these courses be aligned to Kansas standards. Traditionally, this has not been an issue.
Concerns regarding the continuance of advanced placement and other similar courses need to be addressed to the College Board and other responsible parties. The College Board and other parties need to ensure the courses and tests are not in conflict with states’ standards across the country, as was previously the case.
For those wanting to dive further into the issue, we offer the following information and links to resources.
Take the 2014 APUSH (AP US History) course, for example. “The old 5-page Topic Outline for APUSH provided a chronological sequence of key topics. An analysis of…test items…of key people and events (found that) all…were covered in state standards. The previous APUSH course was thus strongly aligned with state standards. This is no longer the case. Now instead of strong alignment with state standards, the new APUSH Exam will be exclusively aligned with the Framework. The Framework categorically states, ‘Beginning with the May 2015 APUSH Exam, no AP US History Exam question will require students to know historical content that falls outside this concept outline.’ So key figures like Benjamin Franklin really have been excised from the APUSH Framework and will not be tested on the Exam.” Today, APUSH students are required to know about the Black Panthers, but not about the Gettysburg Address, D-Day, or Martin Luther King, Jr.
The previous APUSH course was always fine because it did not conflict with, but rather was strongly aligned with states’ standards all across the country. However, the changes being made to the APUSH Framework and Exam will now take the course and exam out of alignment with states’ standards. We have included the actual APUSH Framework document for you. Those responsible for courses like APUSH would be the ones causing AP courses to come out of alignment with states’ standards; states’ standards are not the problem.
As explained, because of this change with APUSH, states are beginning to remove APUSH from their schools. For example, “an Oklahoma legislative committee overwhelmingly approved a bill that would cut funding for the teaching of Advanced Placement U.S. History. … Representative Dan Fisher, who introduced the bill, lamented during Monday’s hearing that the new AP U.S. History framework emphasizes “what is bad about America” and doesn’t teach “American exceptionalism.”…” Earlier this month, the Georgia state Senate introduced a resolution that rejects a new version of the AP U.S. History course for presenting a ‘radically revisionist view of American history’ and minimizing ‘discussion of America’s Founding Fathers, the principles of the Declaration of Independence, [and] the religious influences on our nation’s history.’ It says that if the College Board does not revise the test, Georgia will cut funding for the course. The exam has also sparked controversy in Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Colorado.”
For those wanting to further understand what changes have been made to the APUSH course, please refer to the link: http://www.nas.org/articles/update_on_ap_us_history<a
Findings from a review of the new course:
• Note that the College Board is, effectively, substituting a detailed course design for the broad framework it used to provide. The new plan is still presented as a “framework” the way the Common Core is presented as “standards,” but in both cases the label is hollow. The College Board is becoming a “de facto legislature for the nation’s public and private high schools.”
• Argue that the new framework relentlessly advances a negative view of America. It dwells, for example, on the “rigid racial hierarchy” of colonial times and “ignores the United States’ founding principles.” The Declaration of Independence gets short shrift.
• Observe that the Framework erases major figures from U.S. history, including Benjamin Franklin and James Madison, and drastically minimizes others, such as George Washington, who is glimpsed only in a passing mention of his Farewell Address.
Elsewhere, Krieger describes the APUSH as “an imposition” of a “biased interpretation of American history upon the states and local school districts.” Technically, the schools are free to teach AP U.S. history any way they want, but the reality is that the schools must prepare the students who take the AP courses for the AP exams, which are completely under the control of the College Board. Thus the 120-page APUSH framework will determine what is actually taught.
Also, these two charts offer a “quick glance” at just what the new APUSH neglects.