2023 Social Studies Textbook Review for Florida Citizens Alliance

February 20, 2023. As champions for K-12 education reform, Florida Citizens Alliance (FLCA) organized a comprehensive review of social studies textbooks that were submitted by textbook publishers to the Florida Department of Education. FLCA worked with 69 volunteer reviewers from throughout the State to review 38 textbooks. The reviewers found that 28 of the 38 textbooks should not be considered for adoption, and 8 textbooks required substantive changes to be factually correct. Only 2 out of 38 textbooks were considered acceptable for adoption.

FLCA’s goal was to apprise the Department of Education about the content in the social studies textbooks and the textbook selection process because within the next few months, the Department of Education will select social studies textbooks that are available for adoption by the 67 school districts in Florida. All of FLCA reviewers were trained to understand critical race theory, social-emotional learning, K – 12 curriculum standards, and how to identify factual errors, omission of facts, slants, and bias to evaluate the textbooks accurately. Denise Nystrom, an experienced educator and K-12 administrator served as the project director for this initiative. FLCA made 3 recommendations to the Commissioner of Education, Mr. Manny Diaz:
  1. Reject 28 of the 38 social studies textbooks reviewed by FLCA. Based on detailed assessments the books contain SEL, CRT and bias. This is evidenced by the reviews submitted to the Commissioner of Education by individual reviewers and expressed in the Executive Summary dated Feb 10, 2023.
  2. As a solution, add to the approved list of textbooks from the FLDOE to the school districts the Hillsdale 1776 Project curriculum and the American History and Civics lessons for K-12 classrooms.
  3. Also, add to the approved list of textbooks from the FLDOE to the school districts a recommended reading list of original and secondary source documents and an approved reading list of resources just as the DOE did in the B.E.S.T ELA standards. The Civics list in the ELA standards is a worthy preliminary start but needs to be expanded and included with the approved DOE bid list.
Florida Citizens Alliance (FLCA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve Florida’s K – 12 education by uniting and empowering teachers, students, and parents. Established in 2017 by Keith Flaugh and Pastor Rick Stevens, FLCA focuses on community involvement, education solutions, and advocacy. FLCA collaborates with local community-based teams of parents, concerned citizens, and like- minded strategic partners to improve education for Florida’s 2.8 million children. For more information, go to www.goflca.org. Executive Summary HB7 The Freedom Act 2022 1006.38 (e) Exclusion of teachers editions 1006.29 State instructional materials reviewers- Define Instructional Materials 2022 1006.28 Instructional Materials for K-12 Education 1006.28 1003.42 Required instruction-Publishers Must Comply With This Statute In Terms of Content in Their Textbooks 6A-7.0710 Instructional Materials Evaluation Procedures. No Highlights Updated 11-22-22 Textbook Adoption Review-Policies and Procedures 1006.283(2)(b)8.a. Concerning Student Textbooks 1006.283(2)(b)8.a. Concerning Student Textbooks 1006.28 Section on Excluding Teachers Materials 1006 .38 Textbook Statute 1003.41 Next Generation Sunshine State Standards-What Has to Be Included in Social Studies Curr 6A-1.094124 Required Instruction Planning and Reporting 2022.-No CRT -No Highlights