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Wed Jan 18, 2017, 07:19 AM

Betsy DeVos, Trumps education pick, lauded as bold reformer, called unfit for job

Source: Washington Post

Betsy DeVos, Trumpís education pick, lauded as bold reformer, called unfit for job

By Emma Brown, Danielle Douglas-Gabriel and Moriah Balingit January 17 at 11:37 PM

Democrats attacked Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trumpís education nominee, calling her unfit for the job during a contentious confirmation hearing Tuesday evening, while Republicans defended her as a bold reformer who would disrupt the status quo in U.S. education.

DeVos told skeptical senators that she looked forward to working with them to improve the nationís schools. But she sidestepped several issues important to Democrats and their allies, declining to take a position on whether guns belong in schools or to commit to upholding the Obama administrationís aggressive approach to handling sexual assault on college campuses, and she called Sen. Bernie Sandersís (D-Vt.) ideas about free college ďinteresting.Ē

A Michigan billionaire, DeVos has lobbied for decades to expand charter schools and taxpayer-funded vouchers for private and religious schools, but she has no professional experience in public schools, never attended public schools nor sent her own children to public schools. She also has not held public office.

DeVosís inexperience in the realm of public education appeared at times to be a liability. During rapid-fire questioning by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), she seemed to demonstrate a lack of understanding of one of educationís major federal civil rights laws, which requires states that take federal funding to provide children with disabilities the services they need to benefit from a public education.

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Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/senators-to-scrutinize-betsy-devos-trumps-pick-for-education-secretary/2017/01/17/3a0e6168-da8f-11e6-9a36-1d296534b31e_story.html?utm_term=.3e98798c60b9

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