Lawmakers did not want to confirm Michigan billionaire Betsy DeVos as education secretary in 2016. Thanks to Mike Pence, Betsy got the job. DeVos hasn’t stopped making headlines or creating new enemies since Pence cast his vote. Betsy is a fighter, according to the people who know her. And she hasn’t disappointed those people over the last 18 months. DeVos wants to turn the public school system into a for-profit charter school system because she has proof that for-profit charter schools have higher test scores than public schools. But that proof is questionable, according to some Michigan educators. Betsy’s charter schools in Michigan are not performing as well as DeVos thinks they are, but that’s not stopping her from changing the meaning of public education.
The list of DeVos missteps over the last 18 months have some educators questioning the sanity of the education department. Her “60 Minutes” interview was a nightmare, and her school visits are usually uncomfortable meetings that don’t end well for the students and teachers. She likes to keep a low profile while she dismantles the public school system, and she doesn’t apologize for the way she handles conflicts. DeVos has a mission. That mission is to bring religion into her charter public school system while she claims that isn’t on her “must-do list.”
Betsy is the one Trump official that flies under his radar. She is bringing the for-profit college situation to the forefront once again, and Trump gets satisfaction from that decision. DeVos wants to revitalize the crooks who took money from low-income college students, and she is rolling back Obama’s racial affirmative action policy. Plus, she is reducing the size and the effectiveness of the education department. In short, Betsy DeVos is Donald Trump’s education henchwoman, and she’s good at it.
Most people in Michigan love Betsy and Dick DeVos. Betsy, and husband Dick, donate millions to Michigan nonprofits every year. Some people in their home state call them “the first couple of the Republican Party.” Betsy is a God-fearing woman with strong convictions and a good heart. But she lacks the personality or the compassion to deal with the people she thinks lack credibility. Her lack of credibility seems to be on display when she travels around the country and in Europe. But that lack doesn’t bother her. In her mind, and in the minds of her loyal followers, Betsy can do no wrong. That may be true in Michigan, but in other states, Betsy is an enigma created by Donald Trump for the sole purpose of disrupting the education system.
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