June 25, 2018
Dear Mr. Packer:
As a college dean and former high school Advanced Placement instructor of English and Latin, I have seen firsthand the important of well-designed programs which afford our students access to the content of specific areas, especially world history. When instructing students in Latin, it is critical that they have the context of early civilizations in order to understand how we have evolved over time and how our countries and governments have emerged from these evolutions.
The emphasis of these earliest periods as our foundations provides the basis upon which to learn about subsequent nations and peoples. Removing the identified periods from the AP World History curriculum not only limits students' knowledge and understanding of the modern world, but it also impacts their understanding of literature, art, and so many other areas which were shaped by during these periods.
These proposed eliminations disadvantage current and future students, teachers, and leaders. Not only does the suggested change significantly disservice AP certified instructors, it also disservices future world leaders. Our understanding of ourselves, our nation, and our place in history have been intimately impacted by all of those who preceded us.
Don’t we owe it to our young people, our citizens, and our leaders to give them the strongest education about our past to more accurately make decisions about and understand our present as we look to our future? How will this impact our students who are increasingly more diverse if we ignore and delete many of the contributions of their original cultures?
And many more, I am opposed to this revision. I urge you to reconsider this proposed step.
Dr. Valerie C. Rutledge, Dean
College of Health, Education and Professional Studies
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga