Gainesville Sun, UF Law Students Fight Denial of Professor's Request to Teach Racial Justice Online:
University of Florida law students are demanding college officials grant a professor's appeal to teach her racial justice courses online this semester, a request that was denied by the school, effectively canceling the classes.
Early this week, UF Levin College of Law students were informed that two classes offered this fall — Critical Race Theory and Criminal Procedure: Police and Police Practices — taught by longtime UF law professor Michelle Jacobs, had been canceled. The courses were set to begin next Monday.
Jacobs, a criminal law expert, emailed her students that the law school had denied her request to teach online, which resulted in the cancellation.
More than 150 students, some enrolled in either class, are now demanding for Jacobs’ ability to teach remotely, and for the courses to continue as planned. “We are writing because we have learned that the College of Law has refused, despite the ongoing public health crisis, to allow Professor Michelle Jacobs to teach remotely for the fall 2020 semester,” a letter penned by the students, addressed to UF law school Dean Laura Rosenbury, begins. “It is hard to imagine a time in recent history when the topics of race and policing were more important to study and understand than they are now.”
In a prepared statement to The Sun, Rosenbury said the college cannot comment on any specific course offerings or instructional decisions. She added that the college has provided interactive in-person courses with safety protocols in place. For those with COVID-19 health conditions, the statement read, the school also has offered additional safeguards and adjusted work assignments.
Gainesville Sun, Photos: Law Students Protest for Professor