Sunday, July 2, 2017

NEA President: There Will Be No Photo Ops With DeVos - Teacher Beat - Education Week

NEA President: There Will Be No Photo Ops With DeVos - Teacher Beat - Education Week:

NEA President: There Will Be No Photo Ops With DeVos

Image result for NEA President LIly Eskelsen García  Betsy DeVos

By guest blogger Stephen Sawchuk
NEA President LIly Esekelsen García drew an apparent line in the sand with the Trump administration and U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, saying she would not try to bridge the yawning policy and political gap between them.
"I will not allow the National Education Association to be used by Donald Trump or by Betsy DeVos," she said in a fiery keynote before thousands of delegates. "I do not trust their motives. I do not believe in 'alternative facts.' ... There will be no photo op." 
"We will find common ground with many Republicans and ...NEA President: There Will Be No Photo Ops With DeVos - Teacher Beat - Education Week:

President Donald Trump and his advisers probably didn’t expect his choice for education secretary to cause much of a fuss. After all, Rick Perry was tapped to run the Department of Energy, which he once said he wanted to eliminate. Senator Jeff Sessions, who has spent his career attacking voting rights, was up for attorney general. Scott Pruitt, nominated to run the EPA, has sued the agency at least 14 times. Even Ben Carson was offered a job.
“[DeVos] and her family have spent millions to promote failed private school vouchers and unaccountable for-profit charter schools while working to destabilize and defund public education,” the unions wrote. “This is a dangerous direction that will do nothing to help our most vulnerable students and will exacerbate glaring opportunity gaps.”
DeVos bolstered the case against her with a disastrous performance at her confirmation hearing. She was confused about basic education policy debates. She showed little familiarity with federal education law, and in some cases wouldn’t commit to enforcing it. In one viral moment, she even said schools might need guns to guard against “potential grizzlies.”
Ahead of DeVos’s confirmation vote, union leaders hammered her on cable news, and the NEA organized a million people to email senators in opposition to her nomination. At least 40,000 called the Capitol through a special switchboard the union set up.
DeVos was nonetheless confirmed by the Senate earlier this month, thanks to a tie-breaking vote from Vice President Mike Pence. Since then, she has only stumbledfurther, most egregiously after her visit two weeks ago to Jefferson Academy, a public middle school in Washington, D.C. Though she called the school “awesome” at the end of her tour, she later told the conservative publication Townhall that the teachers there were in “receive mode.” “They’re waiting to be told what they have to do, and that’s not going to bring success to an individual child,” she said. “You have to have teachers who are empowered to facilitate great teaching.”