Wednesday, March 1, 2017

NYC Educator: DeVos of Da People?

NYC Educator: DeVos of Da People?:

DeVos of Da People?

There is no question that US Secretary Betsy DeVos is an active enemy of public schools. At the right-wing conference she attended last week, she opened with a hilarious commentary ridiculing public school students who are too poor to buy lunch. She proudly told the crowd that she told Bernie Sanders there was no such thing as a free lunch.

That's news to most students in my Title One school, which relies on the federal government to give them lunch every day. Maybe DeVos is feeling jolly because her BFFs in the House are moving to take away lunch from poor kids who come to school hungry. Or maybe she finds the free lunch thing amusing because she herself was born rich and married richer. Clearly my students (and I) showed a lack of vision by failing to do that.

I don't suppose there were many free lunches in the elite private educational institutions DeVos and her children attended. When your family can pay tens of thousands of dollars annually for you to be away from the riff raff, you don't mix with the sort of people who fall into that category. That, of course, is one reason a whole lot of private schools exist.

The problem, in fact, is exactly the opposite of what DeVos says it is. She'd tell you that we need more choice. She'd tell you that we need charter schools and vouchers. She'd tell you that HBCUs are about school choice rather than utter lack of it. She'd tell you that we're condemning our children to inadequate facilities by sending them to the public schools that she and Donald Trump have deemed unfit for their children. Ironically, under absolutely no scenario they put forth will our children, whether or not they get free lunch, be attending school alongside the DeVos and Trump children.

If so-called school choice is not the problem, what is? I'd argue it's Betsy DeVos and Donald Trump. I'd argue it's Michelle Rhee and Michael Bloomberg. I'd argue it's Andrew Cuomo, Joel Klein, Bill Gates, John King, and absolutely every one of the so-called education reformers who NYC Educator: DeVos of Da People?: