The Florida Department of Education has rejected the use of dozens of mathematics textbooks alleging the educational material violates the state’s learning standards and incorporates critical race theory.
The Florida Department of Education released a press release that stated, “The approved list followed a thorough review of submissions at the Department, which found 41 percent of the submitted textbooks were impermissible with either Florida’s new standards or contained prohibited topics – the most in Florida’s history.”
The department said some of the rejected textbooks incorporated Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) and references to critical race theory—two frameworks or philosophies that some conservative groups claim are being used to indoctrinate students.
In 2021, the department asked publishers to submit math books that the state could adopt, but the department found that a majority of the books that were submitted violated Florida’s educational standards.
Governor Ron DeSantis said, “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.”
Richard Corcoran, Florida’s commissioner of education said, “We’re going to ensure that Florida has the highest-quality instructional materials aligned to our nationally-recognized standards.”
DeSantis issued an executive order in 2019 that aimed to give Florida’s grade school students “a world-class education that fully prepares them for college and/or a career in the 21st century.”
The Governor said, “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” and the executive order.
Corcoran said due to DeSantis’ leadership, Florida has become a national leader in the education department.
“When it comes to education, other states continue to follow Florida’s lead as we continue to reinforce parents’ rights by focusing on providing their children with a world-class education without the fear of indoctrination or exposure to dangerous and divisive concepts in our classrooms,” Corcoran stated.
The department said publishers whose math books have been denied have the ability to “revise” or “substitute” their work for resubmission.