Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Unconscionable Assault on Betsy DeVos

Double standards and Trump’s nominee for education secretary

By Frederick M. Hess — December 20, 2016

The commentariat has railed against Trumpian incivility, nastiness, and immoderation. It’s striking, though, in how fickle a manner these standards are applied. For instance, last month the president-elect nominated Michigan philanthropist and school reformer Betsy DeVos to serve as U.S. secretary of education; the response has been remarkable, and not in a good way......DeVos has served as board chair for the Alliance for School Choice, as head of All Children Matter (a political-action committee for school-choice advocates), and as a board member of Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education. She has previously served as Republican National committeewoman for Michigan and as chair of the state’s GOP. All in all, she’s a pretty conventional choice. Her nomination was termed a “pretty mainstream pick” by education pundit Andy Rotherham, a former special assistant in Bill Clinton’s White House.......

Arne Duncan, Obama’s first secretary of education, was greeted when nominated in 2008. Duncan, who had never taught, had served for seven years as superintendent of schools in Chicago — where he presided over some of the nation’s highest-paid teachers, mediocre student outcomes, and a massively underfunded pension fund.

As a basketball-playing buddy of Obama’s, Duncan could have been attacked as nothing more than a Chicago crony. Instead, the response to Duncan was glowing......To Read More.....

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