Florida Finds 'Prohibited Topics' in 41% of Math Textbooks

Critical race theory, other banned content prompted rejections, officials say
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2022 12:15 PM CDT
Florida Flunks Math Textbooks Over CRT Content
Florida education officials said 54 out of 132 math textbooks it reviewed didn't meet the state's new standards.   (Getty/jakkaje808)

(Newser) – Dozens of math textbooks submitted by publishers for use in Florida schools have flunked because they contained prohibited content, including critical race theory, state officials said. Under the headline "Florida Rejects Publishers' Attempts to Indoctrinate Students," a statement from the state education department said that 41% of math textbooks recently reviewed were "impermissible with either Florida's new standards or contained prohibited topics." That amounted to 54 texts out of 132 checked for compliance with the new Florida laws, Axios reports.

The education department did not give examples of offending passages or name the textbooks, though it said its process was transparent. Some of them didn't conform to the department's Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking, per the Washington Post. Other problems included barred content, including CRT, and "unsolicited strategies" such as Common Core and Social Emotional Learning, the statement said. The officials said several publishers ignored the order last year by the state's Board of Education, sought by Gov. Ron DeSantis, banning discussion of critical race theory in public schools.

DeSantis praised the education officials for rejecting the textbooks. "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," he said. The president of the Orange County Classroom Teachers Association said she'd like to see the content that the department and DeSantis found problematic, per Click on Orlando. "Certainly in a math book, I can't imagine what he's talking about," Wendy Doromal said. (Read more Florida stories.)

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