Saturday, February 18, 2017

DeVos on Public Teachers: "They're waiting to be told what they have to do..."

Public schools are about to get dismantled under Trump, and Betsy DeVos isn't wasting one minute. Perhaps she didn't like the protesters that greeted her as she visit her first public school? I'm writing this because this is one hell of a way to start out...
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos had a hard time getting inside the District’s Jefferson Middle School Academy last week when protesters briefly blocked her from entering. But at the end of her visit, (she said) teachers at Jefferson were sincere, genuine and dedicated, (but) they seemed to be in “receive mode.”

“They’re waiting to be told what they have to do, and that’s not going to bring success to an individual child,” DeVos told a columnist for the conservative online publication Townhall. “You have to have teachers who are empowered to facilitate great teaching.”
Of course DeVos would notice something like this, having never been in any of our public schools:
Jefferson teacher Caroline Hunt said, “I find it very interesting that the chancellor saw teachers that were pushing rigorous learning, students asking each other high-level questions and cultivating high-level responses, and teachers who take initiative and give their lives to the education of these children. DeVos saw something so different. … Maybe if DeVos knew more about education she would realize just how amazing the students, teachers and staff are.”

Jefferson is one of the fastest-improving schools in the city’s public school system. While fewer than half of students are meeting or approaching grade-level expectations, according to new Common Core tests, the school’s growth has won it classification as a “rising” D.C. school.
DeVos trashes Protesters: The public continues to get in the way of our new authoritarian masters who are hell bent on destroying public education so they can "save" it with "change and new ideas" through privatization:
DeVos kicked off her first public speech by casting the protestors who sought to block her from visiting a Washington, D.C., middle school last week as part of a divisive opposition that's resistant to fresh ideas.
"By keeping kids in and new thinking out, Friday's incident demonstrates just how hostile some people are to change and to new ideas.” 
Magnet Schools praised, But on GOP Hit List for Elimination: GOP policy chaos can be found in their educational contradictions:
DeVos praised magnet schools, which are public schools organized around a particular subject area such as arts or technology, as "the original school choice option."

The House Appropriations Committee, though, is seeking to eliminate funding for the program altogether in its fiscal year 2017 spending bill. Magnet schools lag behind charter schools federal funding ... currently receiving about $96 million a year, compared to charters, which get about $333 million from the feds. 
Religion via Taxpayer Funding: DeVos' "change and new ideas" includes finding every way possible to publically fund religion by gaming the First Amendment:
A policy manifesto from the influential conservative group Council for National Policy, with ties to the Trump administration, including Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Stephen Bannon and Kellyanne Conway, urges the dismantling of the Education Department and bringing God into American classrooms … a “restoration of education in America” that would minimize the federal role, promote religious schools and home schooling and enshrine “historic Judeo-Christian principles” as a basis for instruction.

DeVos’ mother, Elsa Prince Broekhuizen, was named on the council’s board of governors. Her father-in-law, Amway founder Richard DeVos Sr., twice served as president.
So yea, we've got a serious problem looming ahead.

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