A small Florida college is offering an antidote to the wokeism so rampant on other campuses across the nation.
And with a novel approach: by teaching students how to think.
Flagler College, in St. Augustine, is creating a program called the Institute for Classical Education. The institute will be devoted to teaching “quantitative reasoning, writing, and historical literacy,” interim Dean of Academic Life Craig Woelfel told the conservative website Campus Reform on Wednesday.
College President John Delaney recently told the St. Augustine Record that the curriculum is intended to “build around literature and math and, sort of, the fundamentals,” as the foundation “for a well-educated citizen.”
The foundation of the actual program is a $5 million line item in the new state budget that Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed last week.
The new program may not be entirely on the right. But the administration notes it won’t be leftist either.
Delaney had previously told the Record, “Some places kind of have an ideology, you know, to the left or to the right. But the premise is to teach down the middle, not to try to teach one ideology over another.”
“We want to have an institute on the traditional classical educational approach and teaching how to think and not what to think.”
Delaney had said he believed DeSantis would be “receptive” to the idea – and so it seems.
According to the formal budget request submitted to the Legislature, the institute will focus on educating freshmen “through the classical, liberal arts education lens, as a way to increase retention, and promote a balanced world-view in the higher education arena.”
After that is established, the program would host research workshops and conferences to advance “classical model programming.”
The freshmen, the document continued, will “learn about the value and responsibilities of citizenship in a diverse democracy. Consistent with the classical model of education, students will read about political philosophy and the history of science, or explore the cultural meanings of business and entertainment.”
Liberals, of course, hate the idea.
Campus Reform reported that one University of Florida professor insinuated that “‘American exceptionalism’ and ‘Western civilization’ are ‘code’ for erasing minority voices.”
Yet Woelfel, echoing Delaney, told Campus Reform, “What we see the program doing is being committed to helping students think for themselves.”