Florida textbook publishers surrender to DeSantis, scrub woke content

Kendall Tietz, DCNF

Textbook publishers are surrendering to Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis’ demands that math instructional materials get in line with state standards, allowing more books to be added to the approved list, according to the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE).

“Publishers are aligning their instructional materials to state standards and removing woke content allowing the department of education to add 19 more books to the state adoption list over the past 17 days,” the FLDOE announced on its website.

The FLDOE announced on April 15 that it had rejected 41% of math textbooks proposed by publishers for public instruction because they contained “indoctrinating concepts” such as Critical Race Theory (CRT), Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Common Core, which are prohibited by the state according to the Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking (B.E.S.T.) Standards.

The FLDOE explained that publishers could substitute or revise their submitted bids to meet Florida’s specifications or appeal the decision.

Additional books have been added to the adoption list “because they removed woke content and made other changes to meet state standards,” FLDOE Press Secretary Cassie Palelis told the Daily Caller News Foundation on Tuesday.

“We have high standards and reject books with unacceptable content because we know that publishers can easily adjust their materials to meet our guidelines, as displayed by the fact that it took less than two weeks for additional publishers to amend entire books, resubmit them and get put on the adoption list,” Palelis told the DCNF. (RELATED: ‘Borderline Illiterate’: Christopher Rufo Rips Teachers Union Boss For ‘Fighting Against’ Parents)

After initially declining to provide examples of rejected textbooks over copyright concerns, the FLDOE published a few examples of the materials in question on April 21.

Examples included a graph that measured racial prejudice according to political identification that showed conservatives are reportedly more racist than liberals and multiple “social-emotional learning,” activities, which critics have argued is a loophole to repackage CRT and disseminate the material throughout public schools.

https://twitter.com/ChristinaPushaw/status/1521490275553751043?s=20&t=glzJqQxIc6whAKgggNiVow

Palelis said this is the same process as previous instructional materials adoptions and that the FLDOE will continue to give publishers the opportunity “to remediate all deficiencies identified during the review to ensure the broadest selection of high quality instructional materials are available to the school districts and Florida’s students.”

“We hope to add instructional materials to the state adoption list as additional publishers address our concerns and meet our standards,” she concluded.

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