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Politics

Betsy DeVos Visits Tallahassee Schools to Promote School Choice

August 29, 2017 - 2:15pm

School choice advocate and U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos made two stops in Tallahassee this week, visiting a public and private school on Tuesday.

DeVos spent the morning at Holy Comforter Episcopal School, a private Christian school, and then made a stop at Florida State University School Tuesday afternoon. An “A” rated public school, FSU High School is affiliated with the Tallahassee-based university’s School of Education.

Holy Comforter is home to around 550 students in pre-K through 8th grade, while the FSU School has more than 1,700 students from kindergarten to the 12th grade. 

“It is an honor to have a national dignitary come onto our campus and see what is unique about our academic community,”  Virginia Culpepper, Holy Comforter’s director of communication told the Tallahassee Democrat.

DeVos was scheduled to make a third, previously unplanned stop at a Tallahassee voucher school, Bethel Christian Academy, on Wednesday. 

A strong proponent of school choice, DeVos has spent quite a bit of time in Florida since she was confirmed as the country’s Education Secretary earlier this year. 

DeVos visited Florida twice in March, tagging along with President Donald Trump at an Orlando Catholic Elementary School to spread the word about school choice programs.

For years, DeVos was a tireless advocate of school choice programs in her home state of Michigan, where she headed up the state’s Republican Party. DeVos also served as a top donor and fundraiser in Michigan, where she also fervently supported the Detroit charter school system. 

Supporters of school choice say programs like school vouchers and tax credit scholarships are critical because they allow students -- who come from primarily low-income backgrounds -- the opportunity to attend different schools and take control of their education.

The state’s largest teachers’ union, the Florida Education Association, lambasted DeVos’ visit on Monday. 

“It’s no surprise that Betsy DeVos will be visiting a private school among her stops in Tallahassee,” FEA president Joanne McCall said in a statement. “She has long shown her opposition to public schools, her support for unfettered vouchers and for-profit charter school chains and her desire to privatize all education in this nation.”

The FEA has been largely critical of DeVos since she was rumored to be in the running for the Education Secretary position earlier this year. 

DeVos’ time as Education Secretary has not been met without criticism. She was narrowly confirmed to the position in February in a tie vote from the U.S. Senate, broken by Vice President Mike Pence. The tie-breaker was the first of its kind in Senate history.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates. 

 

 

Reach reporter Allison Nielsen by email at allison@sunshinestatenews.com or follow her on Twitter: @AllisonNielsen.

 

 

Comments

If you really want to understand the so called Choice movement, go to YouTube and search for the video presentation on the Corporate Privatization Raiders Destroying Public Education & Our Unions by Danny Weil. Danny Weil is a teacher, author and journalist who is an expert on privatization and charters. He writes for "Truth Out" "Daily Censored" and other publications. At an education conference on Privatization of Public Education and the Unions in San Francisco he discusses the corporate financialization of public education and how this is destroying the public education in the United States along with the role of the education unions in confronting this frontal attack on public education.

If you are interested in the facts, read Diane Ravitch's Book, Reign of Error. It is a best seller and every legislator needs to read this before funding Charter Schools.

Betsy only supports retail charter schools. She is one of the elites who supports training students for obedience. She views education as an industry. Her agenda is the destruction of public education and the corporate takeover and control of educating the nation. Corporations only care about profits for their stockholders and that is why there should never be public private partnerships. Charter schools even the so called non-profits are entering education for money. Read Diane Ravitch’s Book, Reign of Error, The Hoax of Privatization of Public Schools. Diane is one of the foremost authorities on education in the United States, former U.S. assistant secretary of education, an incisive, comprehensive look at today’s American school system that argues against those who claim it is broken and beyond repair; an impassioned but reasoned call to stop the privatization movement that is draining students and funding from our public schools.

Why isn't she visiting Title 1 schools? That would be her area of influence with the federal budget. Instead of promoting a private religious school and a developmental lab school, she should be promoting public school and working to make public schools better. FSUS or Florida High is not a charter school but a developmental lab school affiliated with Florida State University.

She is not qualified for the position. She is uneducated and has never been a teacher of any kind. It is just money appointing money, sad...

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