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DeSantis' Math Textbook Hoax

According to Tampa Bay Times and the Miami Herald reporting, the Florida Department of Education has not clarified why 54 of the 132 books submitted for review were rejected. Governor DeSantis continues to assert that a review of math textbooks submitted by publishers included "indoctrinating concepts like race essentialism, especially, bizarrely, for elementary school students".

There is one problem with DeSantis' claim: It was completely and unequivocally false. No reviewer of Florida math textbooks for elementary school students found any instances of CRT. The truth is that each of the reviewers explicitly stated that they did not find any instances of CRT. In other words, he falsely claimed they found Critical Race Theory.

It is worth noting that across all grade levels, just TWO of 70 reviewers claimed to find evidence of CRT related to high school textbooks. One of the reviewers, Chris Allen, is a member of Moms for Liberty, a group that is trying to get a biography of MLK Jr excluded in classrooms in Tennessee. Her objections to the text included that the author "talks about climate change as if it's fact." Allen seems to believe if there is a passing mention of race it means it's CRT. Moms for Liberty is a right-wing activist group that focus on ginning up controversy about the alleged infiltration of CRT in classrooms. In Tennessee, for example, Moms For Liberty members attempted to ban a biography of MLK Jr, claiming it was CRT. The other reviewer who claims to have found evidence of CRT in a high school math textbook doesn't live in Florida. He's a right-wing college professor in Michigan.

The textbook ban has left only one approved publisher by Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education for K-5 mathematics. This publisher is Accelerate Learning, a company out of Houston, Texas. Accelerate Learning, was acquired by Virginia Governor Glen Youngkin’s Carlyle Group in 2018. It is worth noting that Youngkin has also joined the GOP in their false cries against CRT.

How could this hurt Florida students? The College Board's Advanced Placement Program said that it will remove the AP designation from courses when required topics are banned, a move that would jeopardize the ability of Florida high school students to earn college credit for success in those courses.

The children of Florida deserve better. Texts books should be selected based on the ability for students to achieve. Hand selecting textbooks by the right wing GOP is THEIR form of indoctrination. Educators should be free to teach. Pro Life Republican Ron DeSantis does not care about educating students. He is campaigning at the expense of educating Florida’s students.

Shame on you Ron!


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