New College of Florida embraces classic learning test under Gov. DeSantis’ reforms

The CLT, which focuses on historic material from the Western canon, aims to provide a more accurate measure of intellectual capacity than traditional standardized exams like the SAT and ACT.

New College of Florida embraces classic learning test under Gov. DeSantis’ reforms
AP Photo/Alex Brandon
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Recently reformed by Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, New College of Florida, a public liberal arts school, will begin accepting the Classic Learning Test (CLT) for admissions, an alternative college entrance exam aimed at students with classical and Christian educations.

As part of a broader effort to reform the institution and reverse declining enrolment, Governor DeSantis has appointed six conservative activists and academics to the New College of Florida Board of Trustees, the Daily Wire reported.

The CLT, which focuses on historic material from the Western canon, aims to provide a more accurate measure of intellectual capacity than traditional standardized exams like the SAT and ACT.

New College of Florida Interim President Richard Corcoran commented in a statement, "As New College strives to become a world-class liberal arts educational institution, adding the CLT as an accepted testing option for admissions will ensure we are reaching and welcoming students from all walks of life."

He also emphasized the growing popularity of the CLT among Florida homeschoolers and classically educated students, calling it an exciting step for educational choice and freedom in the state.

These reforms at the liberal arts school coincide with DeSantis' efforts to eliminate critical race theory from Florida's education system. Among the appointees to the New College of Florida Board of Trustees are outspoken critical race theory opponents Christopher Rufo, a Manhattan Institute fellow, and Matthew Spalding, a constitutional government professor at Hillsdale College.

Earlier this year, DeSantis required public university administrators to provide detailed accounts of expenditures related to diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, arguing that DEI bureaucracies are hostile to academic freedom and drain resources.

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  • By David Menzies

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