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Betsy Devos unfit to be Education Secretary

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  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Betsy DeVos is Donald Trump's nominee for the Secretary of Education. She has been undergoing testimony by the Senate.

    Asked bluntly by Sen. Patty Murray of Washington whether she would commit to keeping funding for public schools intact, DeVos dodged the question.

    Under questioning by Al Franken she seemed confused and not knowledgeable about the fundamental debate in public education about how student progress should be measured.

    When Sen. Chris Murphy asked her whether she would agree that guns don’t belong in schools, she said: “I will refer back to Sen. [Mike] Enzi and the school he was talking about in Wyoming. I think probably there, I would imagine that there is probably a gun in the schools to protect from potential grizzlies.”

    Under questioning, Ms DeVos showed no understanding of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, known as IDEA, which requires public schools to provide free and appropriate education to all students with disabilities. When Sen. Maggie Hassan educated her on the law, her reply was, “I may have confused it.”

    Overall most news outlets called her testimony poor, but if you relied on Breitbart News for your information, you would never know that she botched her testimony.

    The DeVos family is also staunchly anti-LGBT. Since 1998, the DeVos family has given more than $6.7 million to Focus on the Family, a group that supports “conversion therapy”—a debunked theory that purports to change the sexual orientation of gay and lesbian individuals that is strongly opposed by the American Psychiatric Association, the Human Rights Campaign, and scores of other medical and civil rights organizations.

    Betsy DeVos's family is very, very wealthy. DeVos was born Elisabeth Prince, the daughter of Elsa (Zwiep) Prince (later, Broekhuizen) and Edgar Prince, a billionaire industrialist. She married into an equally wealthy family. Her husband, Richard Marvin "Dick" DeVos Jr., is a multi-billionaire heir to the Amway direct sales fortune.

    Betsy DeVos is a product of private schools. Neither she nor her children have ever attended or worked in a public school. She is a strong advocate for private school choice voucher programs. She and her family have donated some $200 million to Republican candidates and causes that support her political and education beliefs.

    To better understand Betsy DeVos one would have to study her life of privilege. The Jacobin Magazine covers that in an article, Betsy DeVos’s Golden Age. I won't summarize, but will provide one extract:

    "Betsy DeVos is arguably the single most prolific campaigner for charter schools and school privatization, pouring her enormous wealth into a vast network of organizations — PACs, think tanks, pressure groups — that seek to separate government from education.

    "If she is confirmed as education secretary, for the first time, she can do it for free."

    So we have a billionaire President Elect and a billionaire Secretary of Education (if approved) opposed to public education. What direction will public education take under their watch?

  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    Not a good person or a good nominee. When your family has donated 200 million to the R party.... you are perfect. Guns to stop Grizzly bears should be an automatic disqualification. High paying jobs for those that don't need them.
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    Interesting info regarding this nominee. Ethics review just came in.

    bipartisanreport.com/2017/01/22/results...

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Tucson, AZ
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    Although this thread was started over a year ago, an article popped up this morning that relates directly to it:

    http://tohell-andback.blogspot.com/2015/11/this-is-famous-budweiser-beer.html

    Don't be fooled. It's actually not about beer.

    Here are a few of the key points:

    ************************************************************************

    The following excerpt is taken directly from the Texas Republican Party Platform:

    “Knowledge-based Education - We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Sills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a re-labeling of Outcome Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority. (emphasis mine)

    In other words, the Republicans in Texas really don’t want voters to actually THINK. They would prefer that they keep watching FOX “news” and keep pulling the “R” lever when they vote.

    Compounding the error of the Republican Party is the fact that Texas is considered to be one of the most religious states in the country (47% of its residents are considered to be “very religious”). As a result of their religious philosophy, a large number of folks in Texas no longer trust public schools, who they feel are “biased against Christian values“.

    According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, roughly 1.7 million children in our country are being educated at home, and Texas has (by far) the highest percentage of its students being home schooled. The Texas Home School coalition estimates the total is around 300,000.

    The Texas Supreme Court is currently hearing the case of a family accused of not educating their children because they were waiting for the second coming of Jesus. The family says that the government is violating their constitutional rights. The mother of the children claims to have heard one of her children say they were “going to be raptured”.

    Since the Texas Supreme Court is considered to be a conservative body, it’s anybody’s guess how this court case will come out. Most of us, however, are of the opinion that children who are in school should actually be EDUCATED.

    Regardless of the outcome of the case is the fact that new Governor Greg Abbott recently appointed Donna Bahorich as chair of the Texas Board of Education in June. Critics objected to her lack of experience with the public school system, since she home schooled her three sons before sending them to private schools.

    If I had a choice between having my children attend a public school in Texas or having a few Buds with them on the patio, I’d prefer the beers on the patio.

    At least they would be a lot WISER.

    ***********************************************************

    As we all know, Betsy DeVos is not a fan of public education, since neither she or any of her children attended public schools.

    DeVos has been an advocate of the Detroit charter school system, and she is a member of the board of the Foundation for Excellence in Education. She has served as chair of the board of the Alliance for School Choice and the Acton Institute and headed the All Children Matter PAC, which has received wide criticism for meddling in elections at the state level.

    Her nomination as Secretary of Education was strongly opposed by Democrats. As a result, her confirmation (by a 51-50 vote) was the first time in history that a Cabinet nominee's confirmation was decided by the vice president's tie-breaking vote.

    DeVoc has continued to prove he incompetence numerous times since her confirmation. The most recent debacle was her interview on "60 minutes" in March :

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2018/03/12/education-secretary-betsy-devos-stumbles-during-pointed-60-minutes-interview/?utm_term=.66b54f34e8a2