Clay Schools latest to cut AP Psychology, while DCPS promises minimal impact to students

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — AP Psychology will not be offered in Clay County schools this school year.


The district’s announcement Tuesday makes it the second in Northeast Florida to decide against offering the course in the past two days.

Duval County Public Schools announced it would drop the course on Monday.

The decisions were made despite the Florida Department of Education telling school districts they can offer AP Psychology ‘in its entirety’ on Friday.

Duval School Superintendent Dr. Dana Kriznar argued there’s still too much uncertainty surrounding how the course could be taught because it includes a section on gender and sexual orientation, which state law restricts.

“The College Board has said that the way that they interpret what the legislation says regarding what we can teach and what we can’t teach, they cannot imagine approving the course in that form with all of the topics,” said Kriznar.

In Clay, students will be moved to either AICE Psychology or dual enrolment.

“Our goal in Clay County District Schools is to ensure that our students are receiving a world-class education and awarded the proper credits for the courses they are enrolled in throughout their academic career,” said a spokesperson for Clay County Public Schools in an emailed statement.

Duval County Public Schools said it plans to retrain teachers who were set to teach AP Psychology.

Over the coming days, they will transition to teaching AICE, AP Seminar, or IB Psychology, which will allow students to keep their same schedules, instructors and opportunities to earn college credit.

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DCPS Chief of Marketing and Public Relations Dr. Tracy Pierce didn’t express concerns when asked if retraining teachers was feasible less than a week before the start of the school year.

“It’s all going to happen as quickly as possible,” said Pierce.

Pierce explained the district’s decision was also based on the risk of legal challenges from parents if teachers offered the full AP Psychology course with content that might violate state law.

“So, students are still getting a similar curriculum. It’s coherent with state law and it doesn’t have those risks associated with it and the students will be able to get college credit if they’re successful,” said Pierce.

St. Johns and Nassau County Public Schools do plan to offer AP Psychology this school year.

It remains to be seen whether those districts run into the issues DCPS predicted it might face by offering the course.

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