Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday he doesn’t want any state college or university students graduating with degrees in worthless subjects such as “zombie studies.”
He was speaking about higher education reform at the State College of Florida in Bradenton.
DeSantis is launching legislative proposals to have Florida state colleges and universities provide “education not indoctrination,” according to material from the governor’s office.
“The first thing that we’re gonna propose is, we want to make sure that everybody that goes through a Florida university has to take certain core course requirements,” the Republican said during the news conference. “That’s really focused on giving them the foundations so that they can think for themselves.
“And the core curriculum must be grounded in actual history, the actual philosophy that has shaped Western civilization.
“Our institutions will be graduating students, I think, with degrees that are going to be meaningful. We don’t want students to go through at taxpayer expense and graduate with a degree in zombie studies.”
DeSantis also called for the elimination of all higher education bureaucracies promoting “diversity, equity and inclusion” and critical race theory.
“We are also going to eliminate all DEI and CRT bureaucracies in the state of Florida,” he said. “No funding. And that will wither on the vine.”
The DEI and CRT bans come as DeSantis has been criticized by leftists over his administration’s rejection of an Advanced Placement African-American studies course that it said “lacks educational value and is contrary to Florida law.”
The governor’s higher education reform proposal is designed “to further elevate civil discourse and intellectual freedom in higher education further pushing back against the tactics of liberal elites who suppress free thought in the name of identity politics and indoctrination,” a news release from the governor’s office said.
“In Florida, we will build off of our higher education reforms by aligning core curriculum to the values of liberty and the Western tradition, eliminating politicized bureaucracies like DEI, increasing the amount of research dollars for programs that will feed key industries with talented Florida students, and empowering presidents and boards of trustees to recruit and hire new faculty, including by dedicating record resources for faculty salaries,” DeSantis said in a statement.
His legislative proposals for the year include requiring Florida higher education institutions to put a priority on students graduating with degrees designed for high-income jobs as opposed to those advancing a political agenda.
The proposals also require college administration to “take ownership” of hiring without interference from unions and faculty committees.
College presidents and boards could require post-tenure reviews of faculty at any time “with cause.” Last year, the legislature instituted post-tenure reviews every five years.
Florida higher education institutions could not use “discriminatory political filters, including political loyalty oaths and DEI statements in the hiring process.”
State research universities would be required to annually devote at least $50 million for “STEM-related occupations, businesses or industry partners in Florida that are employing Florida residents.”
Institutions also would be required to align their missions “to education for citizenship of the constitutional republic and Florida’s existing and emerging workforce needs.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.