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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Clinton College Professor Reacts To Removal Of South Carolina AP African American Studies Course

Clinton College Professor Reacts To Removal Of South Carolina AP African American Studies Course


The South Carolina Department of Education recently announced that the AP African American studies course will no longer be offered in the state’s schools.

The decision comes after districts, like Greenville County Schools, wrapped up a two-year pilot program for the AP course.

The class was developed by College Board, a nonprofit that creates AP (Advanced Placement) courses taught nationwide. According to a College Board overview, the course is a study of the diversity of black communities in the United States.  

“They [students] are getting hands-on college experience while still in high school so the transition from high school to college is not that hard for them,” said Dr. Jerret Fite, a professor at Clinton College, a Historically Black Christian college in Rock Hill, South Carolina.


In a statement sent out to school districts, state superintendent Ellen Weaver said there has been significant controversy surrounding the course.

Many teachers and students in the Greenville County school district have vocalized their frustration at the removal of the course, saying this course on the AP level is a necessity.

Local professors, like Dr. Fite, said they’re worried about this decision’s “impact on students preparing for college” and that S.C. officials were also “robbing high school students of opportunities to receive college-level education and earn college credits” that will advance them when they actually get to college.

“They are getting hands-on college experience while still in high school so the transition from high school to college is not that hard for them…”It seems to me they have a solution without a problem.”

CCSD Director on AP African American Studies | Photo Courtesy of WCIV News.

“The issue you have with removing the AP-level courses and giving those communities an opportunity is number one, you rob this intellectual student that at a high school level, can reach potential to help them with their future,” Dr. Fite continued. “If they are on their way or on track to go to college, these courses on a high school level give them college credit so that it expedites their education in college. If they come from an impoverished family it cuts the time down that they’re in school which also cuts the potential debt down.”


The Department of Education said districts have the option to offer the course content as a locally-approved honors course.

The Greenville County school district released the following statement:

“The District received official notification yesterday, June 4, 2024, from the South Carolina Department of Education that the African American Studies AP course will not be available for the 2024-25 school year. Some high schools within Greenville County had this course scheduled for the spring of 2025, which provides the District time to consider the appropriate path moving forward.”

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