Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ Press Secretary Christina Pushaw claimed critics of the Sunshine State’s recent decision to reject dozens of mathematics books for containing “indoctrinating concepts” need a “reality check.” Pushaw added that a homework assignment in Misourri that used questionable topics shows that it’s “no wonder China is winning” when it comes to education.
On Saturday, The Daily Wire reported that the Florida Department of Education announced that after a recent review, 41% of proposed K-12 mathematics books intended for use during the 2022-2023 public school year did not meet state academic standards due to their apparent inclusion of Critical Race Theory principles and other controversial approaches to education.
Some critics wondered how an arithmetic textbook could ever run afoul of such standards.
For example, Florida State Representative Carlos Smith (D) tweeted, “#DeSantis is hysterically pulling math books outta FL schools claiming they ‘indoctrinate’ kids with CRT. This isn’t just crazy right-wing pandering — next they’ll spend MILLIONS of tax dollars forcing schools to buy math books from GOP campaign donors.”
Pushaw answered those critics by tweeting, “This is math homework from a public school district in Missouri. How does this help kids learn algebra, exactly? No wonder China is winning…”
The photo shared had recently gone viral on Twitter for its bizarre questions. In February, Parents Defending Education reported that “Lincoln County R-III School District distributed a worksheet to students that included unusual multiple choice math problems, according to a local resident who shared a photo of the worksheet on Twitter.”
“One question from the ‘Person Puzzle’ worksheet asked if Nobel Laureate poet Maya Angelou was ‘sexually abused by her mother’s’ boyfriend, brother or father. Another question asked whether the writer worked as a ‘pimp, prostitute’ and bookie, ‘Drug Dealer’ or ‘Night Club Dancer’ to support her son as a single mother,” Defending Education noted.
Audrey Henebry, community relations director of Lincoln County R-III School District, a spokesperson with the school district, later sent an email to Parents Defending Education saying in part, “We offer our most sincere apologies for any offense that this has caused, and want to assure our community that this content does not align with the beliefs or mission of the Lincoln County R-III School District.”
“Unfortunately, the assignment originated from a website that allows teachers around the world to share educational resources,” Henebry noted. “At this time, it has been removed from the course and steps are being taken to ensure that it is not used in the future.”
Pushaw used it as an example of how inappropriate lessons can wind up in the classroom, and why Florida’s rejection of certain books was necessary.
“So instead of having a hissy fit because @GovRonDeSantis banned CRT math textbooks, ask yourself why CRT is being injected in math instruction to begin with?” Pushaw tweeted.
“I promise you, in China kids aren’t learning about pimping in math class,” she added.
This is an excerpt from The Daily Wire.
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