The revised Advanced Placement US History curriculum, commonly known as APUSH for the sake of brevity, is once again coming under fire. This time, the North Carolina State Board of Education and the College Board will discuss APUSH.
We have written before about this issue: tempers were particularly flaring in September when high school students in Denver protested changes to their US history curriculum that promoted patriotism and respect for authority while discouraging civil disobedience and social strife. Conservative activists fired back, calling the proposed changes to the APUSH curriculum “anti-American.”
The drama continues in North Carolina, where the North Carolina State Board of Education will soon hold a conference-call meeting to speak with the College Board. According to The Charlotte Observer, the conference call will include a leading national critic of the APUSH curriculum changes.
Critics of the APUSH curriculum changes believe that the course focuses too much on negative topics, like slavery, which they say promotes a “negative view of American history” while supporters of the changes push for a more complete view of American history.
However, not everyone is a critic of these changes. Coming out in defense of the APUSH curriculum is Don Gifford of the Kansas Department of Education. Gifford, an education program consultant on the subjects of history, government, and social studies, defended the changes in an article published in The Wichita Eagle. “History is a story, a narrative that is told,” he posits. “[Critics of APUSH are] trying to validate a particular point of view. They think they’ve found the truth in history, and so they want to prescribe that truth.”
There will also be similar talks taking place in Virginia. According to the AP, the Virginia Board of Education will hold public hearings concerning recent revisions to the history and social science Standards of Learning. The last outline took place in 2008.
What do you think about the continuing controversy around the APUSH revisions? Do you think revisions need to be made?