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Florida Matters examines state lawmakers' efforts to challenge DEI school policies

A crowd of young people stand outside on the campus of USF Tampa. They are protesting and holding signs that say things like "Protect Trans Youth!"
Meghan Bowman
WUSF Public Media
USF students gather outside Marshall Student Center on the University of South Florida Tampa campus to protest for transgender student rights.

We also feature WUSF audio postcards highlighting Black history this month.

This week on Florida Matters, we discuss diversity and inclusion in Florida schools following controversial decisions made by state leaders.

In recent months, the Republican-led legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis have made sweeping changes to both public K through 12 schools and state universities.

Targets include the teaching of race, gender and sexual orientation and the appropriateness of books available in schools.

RELATED: Students and their supporters decry big changes coming to New College of Florida

Last month, DeSantis also appointed six new members to the New College of Florida Board of Trustees. That board quickly removed New College's president and proposed Richard Corcoran, Florida's former education commissioner, as a replacement. On Wednesday, the state board of governors will vote on that recommendation.

Host Matthew Peddie talks with WUSF reporters Cathy Carter, Kerry Sheridan and Meghan Bowman about how New College of Florida and the University of South Florida are dealing with the changes the DeSantis administration has brought on them.

RELATED: USF students take a 'Stand for Freedom' in response to state request for transgender health records

We also highlight some audio postcards created during Black History Month and compiled by Sheridan.

She talked about her conversations with local educators and residents about the importance of Black history as state lawmakers continue to challenge diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. DeSantis has also pushed back on adopting an Advanced Placement high school course on African American history.

RELATED: Black History Month: Your Voices

You can listen to the full conversation by clicking on the “Listen” button above. Or you can listen on the WUSF app under “Programs & Podcasts.”

Hi there! I’m Dinorah Prevost and I’m the producer of Florida Matters, WUSF's weekly public affairs show. That basically means that I plan, record and edit the interviews we feature on the show.
I am the host of WUSF’s weekly public affairs show Florida Matters, where I get to indulge my curiosity in people and explore the endlessly fascinating stories that connect this community.