NEA & AFT decry confirmation of DeVos as the nation’s Education Secretary

A bruising battle in the U.S. Senate and by public education advocates nationwide led to a first-ever tie-breaking vote by a U.S. Vice President on a cabinet nominee.

As a result, billionaire heiress Betsy DeVos, who has no experience with public education, is to lead the nation’s public education system as Education Secretary.

In a statement by National Education Associaton President Lily Eskelsen García, she said:

“We believe that the chance for the success of a child should not depend on winning a charter lottery, being accepted by a private school, or living in the right ZIP code. We have, and will continue, to fight for all students to have a great public school in their community and the opportunity to succeed no matter their backgrounds or circumstances.  …Educators will continue to focus on raising their voices in support of their students and against any effort by the Trump administration to undermine the educational opportunity of all public school students.”

American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten in a statement said:

“It’s telling that even when [Donald] Trump had full control of the legislative and executive branches, he could only get DeVos confirmed by an unprecedented tiebreaking vote by his vice president. That’s because DeVos shows an antipathy for public schools; a full-throttled embrace of private, for-profit alternatives; and a lack of basic understanding of what children need to succeed in school.”

Analysis of “DeVos Agenda” by Inside Higher Ed: New education secretary is expected to shift away from Obama policies on for-profit higher education, regulation, and dealing with sexual assault on campus.