After the confirmation of Betsy DeVos as the Secretary of Education, I was both frustrated and quite frankly a bit perturbed. I can’t be the only one that notices this person is not qualified to lead the department of education! She has the resume of a lobbyist, not of an educator.
Historically, she has been a proponent of school choice meaning private and charter schools and also school vouchers. She has been successful in Michigan with more charter schools in the country other than New Orleans. These schools are run by for profit business people who are perpetually competing for every dollar that the state gives to children to attend school.
The problem is less then 15% of students that graduate from these schools are considered college ready. The schools are failing, most of them do no better than traditional public schools and yet they are still creating them, in contrast the school population in Michigan is shrinking every year.
After knowing the history of DeVos, I am seriously concerned. One of my prodigious interest is that DeVos will try to impose the re-purposing of $20 billion that is currently used to support Title I, to subsidize private schools. Inner city or low income schools need these funds to operate day to day. Taking this money will not only effect teachers, support staff, supplies, and programs that assist our students but it will hurt them academically. The education gap will once again widen and our lowest performing schools will fall further behind.
As citizens and tax payers what can be done to save the future of our students, our schools, and our communities? Well for starters become informed with who is elected as your representative (click here to find yours.) Begin to advocate for this $20 billion, by calling, texting, tweeting, and emailing your congress person. Finally, when midterm elections come up next year 2018, all house seats will be up for re-election and on the ballot.
If your congress person or any local, state or national representative is not supporting your interest then it’s time to replace them. Please don’t sit back allow this to happen to our children. Betsy DeVos’ track record corroborates the notion that she only cares about the bottom line and it is very clear that it is not our children.
Felecia Tucker M.Ed
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