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DeSantis recommends Hialeah Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. to be Florida's next education commissioner

 Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. defends his bill from criticism at the Florida State Capitol on Thursday, March 10, 2022.
Wilfredo Lee
Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. defends his bill from criticism at the Florida State Capitol on Thursday, March 10, 2022.

DeSantis cites Diaz's efforts to help pass several education reforms since he became governor in 2019.

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday recommended that state Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. be named as the state's new education commissioner.

In a press release, DeSantis credited Diaz for supporting a number of educational reforms that have passed since DeSantis took office in 2019.

Diaz also sponsored the bill passed during this year's legislative session that prohibits the teaching of critical race theory in schools and workplaces.

“Manny Diaz has done a great job in the Legislature on education issues ranging from teacher pay to parental rights and choice,” DeSantis said in the release. “I am confident that he will serve our state well as the Commissioner of Education.”

Diaz, a Republican from Hialeah, has served in the Senate since 2012. He also has an extensive background as a teacher, coach, and school administrator.

He would also become the state's first Hispanic commissioner of education.

“It is an honor to be recommended by Governor DeSantis to serve as the Education Commissioner,” Diaz said in the release. “For my entire career I have worked to improve the education system to serve Florida’s students, parents and teachers. I am excited to get to work continuing the mission of the governor to make Florida the Education State.”

Diaz would replace former House speaker Richard Corcoran, who had not previously held an education post but did interview to become president of Florida State University

Corcoran is stepping down at the end of the month to spend more time with his family.

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