Episode 02: “Us” Standing Up For Honest Education: A Conversation From Florida

Episode 02: “Us” Standing Up For Honest Education: A Conversation From Florida

By Race Forward

On this episode of Momentum: A Race Forward Podcast, Marsha Guthrie, Deputy Director of Race Forward’s Government Alliance on Race and Equity’s Network Strategies, and Dr. Maria Cole, co-founder of Common Purpose, come together to share their experiences organizing in Florida for free and honest public education. 

We begin with a powerful testimony from a student that has been directly impacted by the targeting of AP African American studies in the Florida school system, and then Marsha and Dr. Cole talk about the “summer of action” that launched a local effort to fight the weaponization of curriculum and education –– the consequences of which are being felt across the nation every single day. 

In the backdrop of Florida Governor Desantis’ latest efforts in targeting statewide curriculum in public schools and higher education, Marsha and Dr. Cole talk about the importance of organizing deliberately, the implementation of strategies that create a visibility of the groups being affected, and building power through local elections and partnerships with elected officials. 

*This episode is being released just weeks after President Biden issued his second executive order mandating racial equity across the federal government. This second EO calls for sustained, long-term plans and efforts to ensure equitable outcomes for all. 

Resources (by order of mention)

Race Forward Commends Biden Administration On Release of Second Historic Racial Equity Executive Order 


Ron DeSantis’s war on “woke” in Florida schools, explained (via Vox) 


What Florida's Stop Woke Act Means for Schools, Businesses, (via Time Magazine)


The controversy over AP African American studies, explained (via Vox)


Organizers are Fighting Ron DeSantis's Educational Bans with Free Books (via Teen Vogue) 


Jacksonville [faith] leaders join rally in Capitol after Black history class revised amid Gov. DeSantis criticism (via News4Jax)


HEAL Together Race Forward 


Special thanks to: 

Power U Center For Social Change 



About Race Forward: 

Race Forward catalyzes movement building for racial justice. In partnership with communities, organizations, and sectors, we build strategies to advance racial justice in our policies, institutions, and culture. Race Forward imagines a just, multiracial, democratic society, free from oppression and exploitation, in which people of color thrive with power and purpose.


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Executive Producers: 

Hendel Leiva, Cheryl Cato Blakemore

Assistant Editor: Kendy Solis 


Song: "Electro-Light - Symbolism (Mi77er Remix)" is under a Creative Commons (CC-BY) license.

Music promoted by BreakingCopyright: 


Heart UK