Education Secretary Betsy Devos

Have you seen Betsy Devos on the news? She has become the face of America’s education reform. Though it’s not a new topic, Devos has been facing criticism for her business background and lack of teaching experience. However, that’s not what it takes to reform America’s educational programs. Devos says that it takes philanthropy and a knowledge of the public school system to really see how the new programs can affect neighborhoods for the better.


For one, Devos states that philanthropy is largely the reason why these programs are capable of working. She has donations from Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Sam Walton, and her own Devos Family Foundation. The donations total over $134 million and include funding for education in charter schools. Devos says that educational choice is the only option for kids who are stuck going to a failing school just because of their residential location. She thinks that shouldn’t be the case, especially since so many don’t understand what’s being taught in public schools anyway.


Private schools have been the focus of criticism as of late. Many people believe that funding will go straight to private education, but Devos says that is an accusation from people who just don’t understand how it works. Educational choice is about funding from philanthropy and helping state legislatures recognize that they have an issue with sending kids to school.


Florida has proven to be one of Betsy Devos’ pillars for success. The state has the most options for students including virtual or online schools, homeschooling, private schools, charter schools, and magnet programs. This way students can pick exactly where they want to go to school regardless of where they are currently living. This is key to the movement as Devos has stated that parents are tired of the lack of care from the public school system.


Devos also faced challenges for school safety. She was appointed to lead the school safety reform movement. As the school year has just started since new policies are in place, it has been more difficult for students to get to class because of safety measures, but they have proven to make it difficult for school shooters to do anything.


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End Citizens United -Champions of Political Finance Reforms

End Citizens United is a Political Action Committee (PAC) formed on 1st march 2015 to champion for the reforms of the financial election laws in the U.S. The genesis of this group is the famous Americans 2010 Supreme Court’s decision that established a legal basis that corporations are people. According to the Citizens United, big corporations and wealthy individuals are single handily responsible for the big untraceable amounts of cash in the economy during electioneering period.


The PAC’s mission is simple; fighting the Supreme Court’s decision by championing for the election of finance reforms leaders who will help them pass election finance law that will curb the excess money in politics. To achieve its objective, the group’s plan is to use elected pro-reform legislative’s, grassroots memberships for purposes of demonstrating their political goodwill and raising money for purposes of championing their courses.


So far, End Citizens United have been faring well with their objectives if the recent news are anything to go by. In the first quarter of the year, the group has been able to raise at least $4 million from their small grassroots contribution. From the contribution progress, the group has capped their contributions at $35 million, an increase of ten million dollars from the funds it raised to fund its operation in the 2016 elections.


Explaining the positive progress of made by the relatively new group, PAC’s executive director and President, Tiffany Muller noted that at least the group recorded an increase of 40,000 new members who contributed for the first time. The other positive progress noted by Muller is the average membership contribution at $12. However, the groups allows donations from individuals up to the tune of $5000.


The other objective End Citizen United has been spearheading is championing for the election of reform leaders and one person who happens to be the first beneficiary is Democrat Jon Ossoff. Jon Oscoff is a first-timer in politics going for the Tom Prince Georgia seat that fell vacant after his appointment to the secretary position in Health and Human services docket. Thanks to the efforts of End Citizen United, Oscoff, 30 years of age, was able to raise over $4 million for the mini elections. Jon Oscoff’s backing is just the start of the group’s move towards electing political reform leaders with the groups President announcing that they are yet to decide which candidates to support, come the 2018 elections.


Dirty money is one of the characteristic features in most elections globally. End Citizen United, however, is determined to change this narrative in the U.S elections. With the progress made so far, it is definitely a win for them in the next few coming years.