Thursday, January 19, 2017

Does Betsy DeVos Care About Racial Equity? We Still Don’t Know.

Does Betsy DeVos Care About Racial Equity? We Still Don’t Know.:
Does Betsy DeVos Care About Racial Equity? We Still Don’t Know.


So Betsy DeVos doesn’t know much about education policy. Didn’t we already know that?
Nevertheless, the hot takes coming after her rocky confirmation hearing for the US Secretary of Education nominee read as if people are genuinely surprised that someone who has never been a teacher, never run a school, never served as a public official overseeing education, and never been engaged in scholarly work on education is not terribly well versed in education policy.
When peppered with questions about complicated policy issues like assessment methodology and federal enforcement of the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act, “DeVos’s inexperience in the realm of public education appeared at times to be a liability,” observes Emma Brown for the Washington Post.
Libby Nelson at Vox finds DeVos’ reaction to “questions about the basics of federal education policy suggested she knows little about what the department she hopes to lead actually does.”
Valerie Strauss, the education blogger for the Post, writes, “DeVos either displayed a lack of knowledge about education fundamentals or refused to answer questions that Democratic members of the Senate Education Committee believe are critical to her fitness for the job”
The senators’ questions were indeed about important matters and should have been asked, and certainly the queries from the Democratic side of the committee were more worthy than the softball questions and vapid compliments from the Republican side. (Memo to Republican senators: Saying someone really, really “cares about kids” doesn’t qualify her for office.)
But there were bigger, more philosophical education issues DeVos could have likely been more able to expound on had she ever been asked. One of Does Betsy DeVos Care About Racial Equity? We Still Don’t Know.:


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