DeSantis backs school history guidelines

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Published: May. 21, 2021 at 1:20 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (News Service of Florida) - Gov. Ron DeSantis said Friday he urged state education officials to put new guidelines on how U.S. history is taught in public schools. The State Board of Education on June 10 will consider a proposed rule that says teachers “may not define American history as something other than the creation of a new nation based largely on universal principles stated in the Declaration of Independence.

”The proposal also aims to ensure teachers do not “indoctrinate or persuade students to a particular point of view” that is inconsistent with state standards. One target is what is known as critical race theory, which is based on the premise that racism is embedded within American society and institutions. During a news conference Friday in Pensacola, DeSantis said he told education officials “they need to address this, and we’ve got to do it.” DeSantis added,. “(History) needs to be taught accurately, it needs to be taught in a fact-based way not an ideological-based way. If we have to play whack-a-mole all over this state stopping this critical race theory, we will do it.”

State Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran, during a recent speaking engagement at Hillsdale College in Michigan, touted the proposed rule and said “you have to police” Florida teachers on “a daily basis.” The Florida Education Association, the state’s largest teachers union, opposes the proposed rule. “Florida isn’t going to equip students as critical thinkers by hiding facts,” union President Andrew Spar said in a statement Wednesday.

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