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Education Secretary DeVos makes the wrong case for 'school choice'

28 February, 2017, 23:58 | Author: Mae Harvey
  • DC Protesters Greet De Vos Outside a DC Public School

Yes, this really is Kellyanne Conway with her shoes off, knees spread and checking her phone at a meeting of the presidents and administrators of Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Currently, the Education Department runs it. HBCU leaders say returning it to the White House would give their schools more access to the president.

- karla fc holloway (@ProfHolloway) February 28, 2017Betsy DeVos's HBCU statement is reason no. 379 that she should not be secretary of education.

DeVos's praise of HBCUs for providing "options" to students, critics said, ignored the long and fraught history of black colleges, which were, for decades, the single choice available to black students pursuing higher education. "Their success has shown that more options help students flourish". Beyond the profound words that I quoted before, when I look at the role of historically black colleges and universities, I can't help but think of even more ancient words that: If you train up a child in the way they should go, then after they're old, they'll not depart from it. "At the national level, 70 percent of black charter school students attend intensely segregated minority charter schools (which enroll 90-100 percent of students from under-represented minority backgrounds), or twice as many as the share of intensely segregated black students in traditional public schools". These institutions are now referred to as Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs). Betsy DeVos, the woman in charge of education needs an education herself because if you're going to continue to get out there and issue press releases about issues that you do not understand, you're only proving everyone right when they said that you aren't good enough to do this job.

It is time for HBCUs to have a more robust discussion with Republicans, Taylor said. "The president and I admire the contributions of historically black colleges and universities".

The presidents were invited to Washington by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, the nonprofit umbrella organization of public HBCUs headed by Johnny Taylor, who said he reached out to both presidential campaigns about support for the schools last summer. "They saw that the system wasn't working, that there was an absence of opportunity, so they took it upon themselves to provide the solution". At that time, black students didn't have a "choice" and/or "option". To this end, Trump has proposed reducing or eliminating the Federal Department of Education. The Obama administration was particularly aggressive when it came to protecting the civil rights of marginalized students, and it is virtually guaranteed the Trump administration will be less so.

"As HBCUs, we've always done what politicians stress to agencies: To do more with less", the head of the Louisiana college said.

While that summarizes the school choice argument, social media lit up late Monday with supporters of black colleges noting that the institutions were founded because black students had, in many respects, no choice.

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