Controversy engulfs Florida’s education as the State Board introduces new standards for teaching African-American history in middle schools. Criticism mounts over the inclusion of lessons highlighting the ‘benefits’ of enslaved individuals’ skills, sparking debates on historical interpretation and sensitivity.
Florida Board of Education Sparked Controversy
Just before the start of the 2023 school year, the Florida Board of Education sparked controversy when a new set of standards was issued for the instruction on African American history in middle school classrooms.
New Standards for Middle School Curriculum
The new standards require middle school curriculum to include “how slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit.”
Making Light of Slavery
Many critics have said this statement is an attempt to make light of slavery and that it masks the true horrors slaves went through.
Critics Are Upset
Those who are against the new set of standards in Florida say slaves who were raped, tortured, and killed did not benefit from slavery. Skills and jobs were forced upon the slaves; it wasn’t optional or something fun they chose to learn.
Horrific Nature of Slavery
One TikTokker said “framing learned skills as some kind of a perk to being enslaved only downplays the horrific nature of slavery and we should be wary of people who want to do that.”
Kamala Harris Visits Florida
The new standards drew much criticism over implying that slaves could have somehow benefited from captivity and slavery.
Vice President Kamala Harris was appalled when she read the new Florida curriculum standards. She took a last-minute trip to Jacksonville, Florida to express her objections in person.
Harris Calls Out Florida Leaders
In her speech, Harris said “they want to replace history with lies” when referring to the leaders who approved the new standards for how Black history will be taught in Florida public schools. She also accused them of gaslighting and pushing propaganda on the children.
Face History – Don’t Forget It
Harris urged Americans to face history rather than forget it. “Our history as a nation is born out of tragedy and triumph. That’s who we are. Part of that is what gives us our grit,” she said in her closing statements.
Teacher’s Union Expresses Concern on New Standards
Even the Florida Education Association, which is the state’s largest teacher’s union, called the new standards “a step backward” and said students “deserve the full truth of American history”
Disservice to the Students
The state has required schools to teach African American history since 1994 and the teacher’s union sees this new agenda as a disservice to the students.
Students Won’t Be Required to Learn as Much
Per the new standards, students will only be expected to identify famous historical African Americans. They won’t be required to learn about their histories or why these people are important.
One woman on TikTok disagreed with this particular section of the new standards.
Learning Is a “True Privilege”
She says learning about who makes up our history is the “true privilege” of learning. She doesn’t think what students learn in school should be impeded by whatever political bias is happening in the world.
The Importance of African American History
Children will never be equipped for the future if they don’t learn the truth about African American history.
TikTokers Suggest Boycotting Florida
The comments on TikTok are calling for a total boycott of Florida suggesting people not travel there. People feel these new standards are disrespectful and diminishing to African American history and should not be supported.
Travel Advisory Issued for Florida
In May, the NAACP issued a formal travel advisory for Florida stating “Florida is openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals.”
An Attempt to Erase Black History
The NAACP said their travel advisory was a direct response to Governor Ron DeSantis’ attempts to erase Black history and to restrict diversity and inclusion programs in Florida schools.
Ron DeSantis Defends the New Standards
DeSantis said the new curriculum standards are being misinterpreted and he accused Kamala Harris of lying about what the state’s standards are.
According to DeSantis, the students in Florida will be taught under the provision that “enslaved people received the skills in spite of slavery, not because of it.”
Controversy Is Not New to Florida
Ron DeSantis and the state of Florida have been at the center of many political controversies in the recent months and years. The state has passed many controversial laws related to immigration, the LGBTQ+ community, gun carrying, and abortion.
Is He Hiding Something? – Biden Reacts Sharply to a Reporter After Being Asked About His Involvement in His Son’s Business Deals
When questioned about his son Hunter’s business ties, President Joe Biden’s response stirred controversy. The White House is now on the defensive, asserting no involvement by Biden in Hunter’s dealings. This incident reignites debates about the President’s familial connections. Is He Hiding Something? – Biden Reacts Sharply to a Reporter After Being Asked About His Involvement in His Son’s Business Deals
Missing “Ancient Ceramic Oil Lamps” Allegedly Found at Trump’s Mar-A-Lago Resort, Exposing ANOTHER Peculiar Issue
Donald Trump’s presidency was marked by controversy and polarizing decisions, but a recent report sheds light on a peculiar and unexpected issue: missing ancient ceramic oil lamps. Here’s the full story. Missing “Ancient Ceramic Oil Lamps” Allegedly Found at Trump’s Mar-A-Lago Resort, Exposing ANOTHER Peculiar Issue
“No Whites” Tai Chi Classes – Prestigious University Sparks Controversy After Offering Exclusive Program for “People of Color”
King’s College London, a prestigious university, found itself caught up in controversy after it offered free tai chi classes aimed at combating chronic stress triggered by racism. Here’s the full story. “No Whites” Tai Chi Classes – Prestigious University Sparks Controversy After Offering Exclusive Program for “People of Color”
Ex-Republican Congressman Kinzinger Claims Donald Trump Might Be Experiencing a Genuine Mental Decline – “I Think He’s Actually Going Insane”
Former Republican congressman Adam Kinzinger suggests that Donald Trump may be genuinely “losing his mind.” Ex-Republican Congressman Kinzinger Claims Donald Trump Might Be Experiencing a Genuine Mental Decline – “I Think He’s Actually Going Insane”
“They Weren’t in Line With the Teachings of the Church” – Sixth Grade Student EXPELLED Due to Parents’ Pro-LGBTQ+ Beliefs
The quiet town of Blue Springs, Missouri, became the epicenter of a debate that has shaken the very foundation of St. John LaLande Catholic School. “They Weren’t in Line With the Teachings of the Church” – Sixth Grade Student EXPELLED Due to Parents’ Pro-LGBTQ+ Beliefs
The post “They Seek to Rewrite History With Distortions” – Middle School Curriculum Under Fire for Allegedly Romanticizing Slavery Instead of Confronting Its Grim Reality first appeared on Fistful of Dollars.
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Daniel Hoz. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.
Source: CBS News