An organization that advocates for Florida’s Muslim community is calling on state education officials to reverse course on a recent decision to approve conservative PragerU video content to be shown in public schools.
Last week, a spokesperson for the state Department of Education said that videos from PragerU Kids had been reviewed by the department and that their content “aligns” with state education standards guiding civics and government instruction.
“PragerU Kids is no different than many other resources, which can be used as supplemental materials in Florida schools at district discretion,” department spokesperson Cassandra Palelis said in an email.
The PragerU Kids videos cover topics such as America’s system of government, various historical events and religious stories.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, and its Florida chapter on Tuesday asked the state education department to “clarify and reject any relationship between the Islamophobic Prager University and Florida schools.”
CAIR in a news release pointed to a “factsheet” published by the Georgetown University Bridge Initiative, which is described on its website as “a multi-year research project on Islamophobia” housed at Georgetown.
“A number of PragerU’s videos spread anti-Muslim rhetoric and conspiracy theories,” the document, published in 2020, said.
The Bridge Initiative document cited multiple PragerU videos.
For example, the Bridge Initiative took issue with videos titled “Is Islam a Religion of Peace?” and “Where are the Moderate Muslims?”
The cited videos, however, were not part of the PragerU Kids collection of videos.
“Florida can do better by its students than serving them hate content from PragerU,” CAIR-Florida Executive Director Imam Abdullah Jaber said in Tuesday’s press release.
A description of the content for younger audiences on the PragerU website maintains it is “the leading network with educational, entertaining, pro-American kids shows for every grade.”
©2023 The News Service of Florida
- Here is CAIR’s take on the influence of PragerU
- Here is CAIR’s report on Hungary paying Dennis Prager for appearances at an “education” conference