Two weeks ago, the University of Florida voted to deny Jeb Bush an honorary degree. By a 38–28 vote, the faculty Senate rejected the former governor’s nomination, citing concerns about some of Bush’s education initiatives, including his dismantling of affirmative action programs in the state:
In higher education circles, Bush’s greatest criticism came over his “One Florida” plan, which ended race-based admissions in state universities. Black enrollment dropped at UF and statewide after the change took effect, as critics predicted.
Bush’s policies of “rewarding and punishing schools according to students’ standardized test results and using vouchers to send certain students to private schools at public expense” also contributed to the rejection of his nomination.
Upset by this lack of Jeb Bush adoration, the conservative-controlled House Schools & Learning Council voted yesterday to force the university to rename its education school the “Jeb Bush College of Education.”
Over the faculty’s opposition, the school will now have “to erect ‘suitable markers’ noting the college’s new name and include the revised name in all university documents, including catalogues and brochures.” The lawmakers acknowledge they “came up with the idea as an answer” to the faculty’s denial of Bush’s honorary degree.