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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