In Florida, alongside lessons in reading, writing, and arithmetic, kindergarteners may also soon be required to learn about the “threat of communism in the United States.”
Republicans’ House Bill 1349 would require that public students in grades K-12 learn about the history of communism. Specifically, that includes the “increasing threat of communism in the United States and our allies through the 20th Century.” Under current state law, kids don’t receive lessons about communism until the seventh grade.
Should the bill pass, students as young as 5 could soon be forced to learn about “the history of domestic communist movements and their tactics within the United States, the philosophy and lineages of communist thought, including Marxism, [and] foreign communist movements of the 20th century, the atrocities committed by such movements, and the threat they posed to the United States and its allies.”
The bill would also create a “Communism Education Task Force,” with members appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis, to shape curriculum and standards for instruction on the history of communism.
This isn’t just some crazy proposal. After all, Republicans have a trifecta hold over the state’s government, with majorities in the state House and Senate as well as a Republican governor who, having lost a shot at the White House, now has renewed vigor in his personal crusade against all things woke.
A parallel bill, Senate Bill 1264, is moving forward in the Senate, increasing the chances that it could land on DeSantis’s desk before the end of the legislative session on March 8.
The House version is more extreme, however, also requiring kids to learn about the threats of “cultural Marxism.” Many Democrats pushed back on the inclusion, including Representative Susan Valdes.
“Cultural Marxism, isn’t that a very politically charged terminology that’s being used?” Valdes asked. “I don’t know, is it?” James Buchanan, one of the bill’s co-sponsors, replied.
If it passes, the curriculum change would take effect in the 2026–2027 school year.
As The Miami Herald noted in its coverage of the bill, starting this year, Florida high school students in U.S. government classes must receive at least 45 minutes of instruction on “Victims of Communism Day” before they can graduate.