The head of Florida’s Education Department is urging parents to “be involved” in public schools for their children’s sake. 

“Parents are the most important teacher, and the child’s first teacher, and ultimately are responsible for these kids,” Florida Education Commissioner Manny Diaz Jr. told Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts. “These kids don’t belong to the government.”

Diaz made his remarks on Roberts’ weekly podcast, “The Kevin Roberts Show.”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis giving a speech.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis—seen here at an April 8 news conference in Sanford, Florida—nominated Manny Diaz Jr. as his top state education official in 2022. Diaz shares the governor’s conservative views on education, and he shared those views with “The Kevin Roberts Show” podcast this week. (Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/Light Rocket/Getty Images)

Diaz, a senior official in the administration of Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, denounced the Left’s push for what he called “radical ideologies” aimed at schoolchildren and criticized the media for attempting to “tell us that it’s not happening.” The former state lawmaker suggested steps for parents to keep an institution “in check.”

Get involved “as much as you can,” whether by “helping with field trips,” or through “extracurricular activities, or lunch,” Diaz, a former high school baseball coach and teacher himself, urged parents. “When you are there, you’re going to get a feel for what is going on.”

“When you go to a school, you need to sit down with the leadership,” added Diaz, the father of four. Understand the “mission” and “leadership style” and “make sure your values align,” the state education chief urged. “Make sure the programming aligns to the needs of your child.” 

The DeSantis administration will continue to “take action” to empower parents in Florida, Diaz promised. 

Watch the full interview on “The Kevin Roberts Show” to hear how Diaz is carrying out DeSantis’ parental rights agenda.