Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced plans to reform public universities by banning CRT and investing millions of dollars in Sarasota’s New College.
A board member at The New College of Florida where Gov. Ron DeSantis responded to a progressive college’s active recruitment of students from New College.
Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, is publicly offering New College students the opportunity to transfer, offering to match tuition and transfer credits.
This opportunity is in response to the continuing attacks on New College of Florida intended to limit intellectual exploration, turn back progress toward inclusion, and curtail open discussion of race, injustice, and histories of oppression. By committing to impose a narrowly politicized curriculum on New College, the newly appointed trustees broke promises made to its current students to support a self-directed, rigorous education grounded in a commitment to free inquiry.
Matthew Spalding, a New College board member, responded to Wingenbach in comments to The Daily Signal.
“In Hampshire College’s official announcement that they will take transfer students from New College, they said that they proudly stand with students who ‘crave a progressive education’ and who want their academic experience to focus on discussions of ‘racism, white supremacy, gender identity, structural barriers to equity, and the reproduction of oppressive hierarchies,’” Spalding said.
“That sounds to me like political indoctrination, which is not a serious alternative to a rigorous study of the liberal arts,” Spalding, who also serves as a professor at Hillsdale College in Michigan, added.
DeSantis appointed six new members to the New College board of trustees, including Christopher Rufo, to shift the state university away from promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion; critical race theory; and gender ideology.
“The mission has been I think more into the DEI, CRT, the gender ideology rather than what a liberal arts education should be,” DeSantis said of New College during a press conference in January.
DeSantis says he aims to ensure that the college’s funding is properly allocated, and the students can succeed.
“Think about it,” he explained. “How many times have [you] had $15 million dollars going into the kitty so that you’re going to be able to recruit faculty immediately? You’re going to be able to offer scholarships for students who are high performing? So, we want the institution to succeed, if we didn’t, we would just starve it of funding.”
Hampshire College’s lenient academic structure encourages students to design their course studies. The college has been attempting to ramp up admissions and has been facing financial strain since 2019. Both colleges are known for a progressive approach to education.
Jennifer Chrisler, a spokesperson for Hampshire, said New College students had inquired about the transfer program. Hampshire also raised $39 million since starting a fundraising campaign in 2019 and experienced a 75% increase in first-year students.