Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced on Wednesday the exclusion of critical race theory from Florida schools' curriculum.
At a news conference in Naples, Gov. DeSantis outlined the state's plan on civic education covering the budget, teachers' training, and the curriculum, The Federalist reported.
The governor noted that "a high-quality education begins with a high-quality curriculum," hence the proposed $17 million for the development of civics curricula and another $16.5 million for teachers and principals training in civics education. Anyone who gets credentialed would get a $3,000 bonus.
"Florida civics curriculum will incorporate foundational concepts with the best materials, and it will expressly exclude unsanctioned narratives like critical race theory and other unsubstantiated theories," he said.
"There is no room in classrooms for things like critical race theory," emphasized DeSantis and added, "Teaching kids to hate their country and to hate each other is not worth one red cent of taxpayer money."
He argued that the critical race theory is only "trying to make people view each other based on race" and that he'd want to do the opposite.
"Our schools are supposed to give people a foundation of knowledge, not supposed to be indoctrination centers, where you're trying to push specific ideologies," the governor noted.
According to the First Amendment Encyclopedia, Critical race theory (CRT) was developed based on the 1970s-1980s philosophical writings of Professor Derrick Bell of the University of Washington Law School. Soon it became a movement that "elevates the equality principles of the Fourteenth Amendment above the liberty principles of the First Amendment."
DeSantis hopes to lessen polarization in the U.S. through the development of a civic education that focuses on instilling foundational values on every learner instead of classifying races and privileges based on one's ethnicity.
"No matter if your family came on the Mayflower or you became a naturalized citizen, these principles belong to you," said DeSantis.
In another part of his speech, the Republican governor said that the state would rather invest in "actual, solid, true curriculum" and will be a "leader in the development and implementation of a world-class civics education."
According to The Federalist, the Florida governor's proposed plan "directly opposes civics mandates in the state of Illinois that call for critical race theory training." The training, dubbed as "Culturally Responsive Teaching and Leading Standards," calls for institutions and educators to assess "how they access tools to mitigate their own behavior (racism, sexism, homophobia, unearned privilege, Eurocentrism, etc)."
Back in September, then-President Trump also denounced the theory and called on the Office of Management and Budget to end racial sensitivity training.
"They were teaching people that our country is a horrible place, it's a racist place, and they were teaching people to hate our country, and I'm not going to allow that to happen," he was also quoted saying during the presidential debate about the training.
In February, Republican Reps. Riley Keaton, Josh Holstein, Trenton Barnhart, and Johnnie Wamsley, authored a House bill for West Virginia that would prohibit a curricula that promotes "divisive acts" leading to "race scapegoating" which was defined as follows:
""Race or sex scapegoating" means assigning fault, blame, or bias to a race or sex, or to members of a race or sex because of their race or sex. It similarly encompasses any claim that, consciously or unconsciously, and by virtue of his or her race or sex, members of any race are inherently racist or are inherently inclined to oppress others, or that members of a sex are inherently sexist or inclined to oppress others."