Two Tennessee state senators joined the conservative charge against the new framework for the AP U.S. History Exam last week, urging the state to review the new version of the test, The Tennessean reported.
Conservatives claim that the new framework for the exam leaves out key historical figures and events, such as the founding fathers and important military commanders.
The Republican National Committee in August voted to condemn the new framework and the College Board’s “radically revisionist view of American history that emphasizes negative aspects of our nation’s history while omitting or minimizing positive aspects.”
From there, conservative pushback has snowballed. Last week, the National Review suggested that the new exam was the result of “a movement of left-leaning historians that aims to ‘internationalize’ the teaching of American history.”
Republican state Senators Dolores Gresham (pictured above) and Mike Bell asked the Tennessee State Board of Education to review the materials required for the course and the new framework.
“There are many concerns with the new APUSH framework, not the least of which is that it pushes a revisionist interpretation of historical facts,” Gresham said in a statement, according to The Tennessean. “The items listed as required knowledge have some inclusions which are agenda-driven, while leaving out basic facts that are very important to our nation’s history.”
The deputy director for the state board of education, David Sevier, said that the board will likely take up the review.
The College Board has insisted that there was no political motivation behind the exam and that the framework is merely a guide. The authors of the exam defended the framework in an open letter explaining that the new exam focuses less on details and more on critical thinking.
“Debate and disagreement are central to the discipline of history, and thus to AP U.S. History as well,” the authors of the exam wrote. “The goal is to help students acquire a strong command of historical facts and then to be able to understand, formulate, and critique different interpretations of the past and of its meaning for today.”