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Gov. DeSantis and former Trump advisor launch anti-woke college crusade

Published in Blog on January 11, 2023 by Jakob Fay

“New College of Florida has a reputation for being the most progressive public college in the state,” The New York Times reports.

But if Ron DeSantis has his way, that is all about to change.

New College is not just “progressive”; it’s woke. And as the popular governor vowed in his inaugural address, “Florida is where woke goes to die.”

Of course, the government should not necessarily be allowed to mandate any political agenda in education (to do so would set a dangerous precedent). Instead, DeSantis has appointed six highly qualified individuals who will defend traditional values to serve on the 13-member New College Board of Trustees.

His appointees include Christopher Rufo, Matthew Spalding, Ph.D., Charles R. Kesler, A.B., A.M., and Ph.D., Mark Bauerlein, Ph.D., Debra Jenks, and Jason “Eddie” Speir.

Mr. Rufo, who has a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and a master’s degree from Harvard University, has led the charge against critical race theory and gender ideology in public schools. He told a reporter that he and his fellow appointees “want to provide an alternative for conservative families in the state of Florida to say there is a public university that reflects your values.”

Professor Spalding, another of DeSantis’ appointees, teaches Constitutional Government at Hillsdale College and oversees the Allan P. Kirby Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship. Spalding worked for President Trump, serving on his 1776 Commision to “advise the President about the core principles of the American founding and how to protect those principles by promoting patriotic education.”

“As Governor DeSantis stated in his second inaugural speech: ‘We must ensure that our institutions of higher learning are focused on academic excellence and the pursuit of truth.’ Starting today, the ship is turning around,” the Governor’s Press Secretary told The Daily Wire. “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.”

DeSantis has repeatedly affirmed his commitment to resisting wokeness. “We will not let the far-left woke agenda take over our schools and workplaces,” he said.

“We seek normalcy, not philosophical lunacy,” he declared in his recent second inaugural address.

The Sunshine State’s resounding success is a testimony to the popularity of DeSantis’ anti-woke crusade. If the people of Florida are so supportive of his quest for normalcy, it only makes sense that they would want those values reflected in their schools.

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