Florida Professors Try to Stop DeSantis From Halting Woke in Universities, Sue Over ‘Stop Woke Act.’
A group of Florida college professors on Wednesday asked a federal judge to block Gov. Ron DeSantis from requesting spending data on diversity, equity, and inclusion, and critical race theory programs in state universities in efforts to hold up the governor’s “Stop WOKE Act.”
Tallahassee U.S. District Judge Mark Walker already blocked the law, which DeSantis’ office is currently appealing. Legal hold-ups are par for the course with any law surrounded by this level of controversy, so DeSantis’s office carried on with preparations for the law, assuming it survives legal scrutiny.
To this end, the governor requested in December that state colleges hand over spending data and other relevant information about school programs regarding diversity, equity and inclusion, and critical race theory. DeSantis’s team requested the information be supplied by this Friday.
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This request sparked backlash, with some college educators represented by the ACLU, who argued the governor’s request for the data violates the court-ordered block, tying up the information in legal processes as well.
ACLU staff attorney Jerry Edwards called the law, which essentially sets curriculum standards for state schools, “unconstitutional.” In the same statement, Edwards argued that the data collection on how government money was being spent at these state colleges qualified as a “step towards enforcement.” Whether or not his characterizations will hold water in court remains to be seen.
The teacher’s filing comes as just one part of a lawsuit against the act, which prohibits teaching or practices that assume members of one ethnic group are inherently racist or should feel guilt for past actions committed by others. It does not allow the idea of inherent racial or sexual privilege to be taught or that discrimination is a moral way to achieve diversity.
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DeSantis Press Secretary Bryan Griffin detailed the goals of the new act.
“Starting today, the ship is turning around. New College of Florida, under the Governor’s new appointees, will be refocused on its founding mission of providing a world-class quality education with an exceptional focus on the classics.”
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DeSantis Puts Universities on Notice Regarding Public Funds Spent on Critical Race Theory and DEI
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