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Florida Asserts Control of Public Universities’ Curricula

September 26, 2022

The state of Florida, in responding to a lawsuit, asserted that it has near total control of the curriculum at public universities.

Six professors, one retired professor and a student have sued to challenge the Individual Freedom Act, which bars them from endorsing eight concepts of race or racial superiority. The professors say the law unfairly restricts their freedom to speak out.

The state’s response: “Plaintiffs’ First Amendment challenge fails because the Florida Government has simply chosen to regulate its own speech—the curriculum used in state universities and the in-class instruction offered by state employees—and the First Amendment simply has no application in this context.” And: “All it says is that state-employed teachers may not espouse in the classroom the concepts prohibited by the act, while they are on the state clock, in exchange for a state paycheck.”

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Scott Jaschik

Scott Jaschik, Editor, is one of the three founders of Inside Higher Ed. With Doug Lederman, he leads the editorial operations of Inside Higher Ed, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, career advice, blogs and other features. Scott is a leading voice on higher education issues, quoted regularly in publications nationwide, and publishing articles on colleges in publications such as The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Salon, and elsewhere. He has been a judge or screener for the National Magazine Awards, the Online Journalism Awards, the Folio Editorial Excellence Awards, and the Education Writers Association Awards. Scott served as a mentor in the community college fellowship program of the Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media, of Teachers College, Columbia University. He is a member of the board of the Education Writers Association. From 1999-2003, Scott was editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education. Scott grew up in Rochester, N.Y., and graduated from Cornell University in 1985. He lives in Washington.

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