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Patriotism is now part of Florida's Civics education standards

An American flag mounted on the side of a home
Jonathan Meyer
An American flag displayed on a house

Florida school kids will be learning about patriotism in their civics classes. The move is part of standards changes approved Wednesday by the state board of education.

The approval follows efforts spearheaded by Republicans earlier this year. The Florida Department of Education says it reached out to social studies teachers, college and university professors to get input and also held public meetings in certain parts of the state.

“This is not something done under the cover of darkness. This is done in an open, transparent, and public way. And I just thought it was something to highlight," said Board member Ryan Perry, in an attempt to stave off criticism about the standards development process.

The state’s newest civics law requires instruction on political ideologies that conflict with the U.S. system. According to a staff analysis of the law, it also requires students to be taught about an “upright and desirable citizenry that recognizes and accepts responsibility for preserving and defending the liberty inherited from prior generations and secured by the United States Constitution.”

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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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