The Florida Department of Education (DOE) released Thursday examples of “problematic elements” in instructional materials, which include references to tenets of critical race theory (CRT).
The examples’ publishing followed the DOE’s Monday announcement to “reject publishers’ attempts to indoctrinate students” with ideologies such as the CRT.
In one of the pictures shown on Florida’s DOE website, a math question on polynomials shows what appears to be a quantified measure of racial prejudice on the vertical axis plotted against “political identification” on the horizontal axis.
The figure appears to imply that those who are politically conservative have a higher level of racial prejudice.
Another picture shows a textbook section with a “Social and Emotional Learning” (SEL) objective beside a content objective of counting to five.
According to the DOE’s Monday statement, the SEL framework is considered an example of “unsolicited strategies” that should not be included in instructional materials.
The DOE’s website says the examples published on Thursday are part of an “exhaustive list of input” the Department received from the public throughout its public review process for instructional materials.
“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,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said in the Monday statement. “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.”
As a part of this vetting process, the Florida DOE has rejected 54 of 138 books submitted by publishers since 2021, including those with “rebranded instructional materials based on Common Core Standards,” which DeSantis has been pushing to replace with the new “Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking” (B.E.S.T.) Standards.
“It was done by the Department of Education with lots of individuals that are former teachers and administrators. Reviewing textbooks to make sure they did not have these types of philosophies and ideologies that are harmful to our children,” Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nunez told Fox & Friends on Monday.