The recent nomination of Betsy DeVos as U.S. secretary of education is a step in a dangerous direction. DeVos is an anti-public education activist who has spent two decades trying to dismantle the American public school system. In so doing, she has harmed our students.
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. If she is confirmed and continues her efforts, our most vulnerable students will be hurt, and glaring educational opportunity gaps will widen.
In an open letter, NEA and CTA are calling on DeVos and political leaders at every level to commit to the American vision of public education for all — one that welcomes and includes students of all backgrounds, identities, origins and abilities. CTA and NEA are asking supporters to reassert their values for public education by adding their name to this letter, which you can do here.
Our voices, and our values, must be heard. All children, regardless of family circumstances or where they live, have the right to an education that helps them reach their full potential and does not depend on living in advantaged circumstances, getting accepted by a private school or being selected in a charter school lottery.
Ninety percent of American children attend public schools. Students deserve leaders who are committed to ensuring equal opportunity rather than continuing discriminatory policies that abandon the students who need us most. Students and communities need schools that answer to them and their elected representatives — not to billionaires, corporations, hedge fund managers and others seek to control public schools.
Join with fellow educators, parents, students and all public education supporters to reassert our values, and to demand that our secretary of education and every elected official respect and uphold this vision for high-quality public schools for every single student. Add your name now.
For more information and background, see:
“5 reasons Why Trump Pick Betsy DeVos Is Wrong for Secretary of Education,” Edvotes
“Betsy DeVos, Trump’s Education Pick, Has Steered Money From Public Schools,” New York Times
“Trump Picks Billionaire Betsy DeVos, School Voucher Advocate, as Education Secretary,” Washington Post
“Meet Betsy DeVos, Trump’s Pick for Education Secretary,” The Daily Signal
Statement by NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia on Betsy DeVos nomination