Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., defended the Florida Department of Education’s (DOE) decision to reject nearly half of the submitted math textbooks for refusing to meet the state’s benchmark standards and containing prohibited topics such as Critical Race Theory.
“We have B.E.S.T. [Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking] standards, which is a better way to do a lot of things, but particularly math,” DeSantis said during a press conference Monday. “So, any of the books that don’t meet the best standards are not going to be appropriate for us to use.”
The governor revealed that “social and emotional learning” and other prohibited political topics were found throughout the textbooks. “It’s not about how you feel about the problem or to introduce some of these other things; it’s there’s a right answer and there’s a wrong answer,” he said.
The Florida DOE rejected 41 percent of submitted textbooks on the state’s adopted list after the books were found to be “impermissible with either Florida’s new standards or contained prohibited topics – the most in Florida’s history.”
Reasons for rejection include references to Critical Race Theory, Common Core, and “unsolicited addition” of Social Emotional Learning. 71 percent of the rejected books belonged to grades K-5.
“It seems that some publishers attempted to slap a coat of paint on an old house built on the foundation of Common Core, and indoctrinating concepts like race essentialism, especially, bizarrely, for elementary school students,” DeSantis said following the DEO’s announcement.
“I’m grateful that Commissioner Corcoran and his team at the Department have conducted such a thorough vetting of these textbooks to ensure they comply with the law,” the governor continued.
In 2021, DeSantis pledged to fight against CRT and introduced legislation banning it from schools and employee training.
“In Florida we are taking a stand against the state-sanctioned racism that is critical race theory,” the governor said, announcing the proposal. “We won’t allow Florida tax dollars to be spent teaching kids to hate our country or to hate each other.”
In March, DeSantis also signed the Parental Rights in Education Act, empowering parents’ involvement in education and preventing inappropriate topics from being taught to young students.
The legislation proved to be a significant victory for Americans, yet Democrat leaders and corporations continue to perpetuate misleading narratives.