Betsy Devos: the new Education Secretary

Have you seen the latest from Washington? It seems that the Devos family has moved in permanently to Capitol Hill. The newest and 11th US Education Secretary was the first to start polarizing America with her beliefs on educational choice, and now her husband also joins her in Washington. He will become apart of the FAA’s new Management Advisory Council.

 

Betsy Devos has been working towards this for a long time. She got her start in education reform at Calvin College, where she was active in political societies and would eventually go on to work on Jimmy Carter’s administration in the 1980s. She would continue to work on education reform and support philanthropy throughout the 1990s. In fact, the Devos Family Foundation has donated over $139 million to charities, including education and healthcare organizations.

 

In a recent interview, Devos was asked about her educational choice policies and whether she thought that any of them had been successful. She believes that there hasn’t been enough time to implement as many educational changes as she’d like, but that Florida is the most successful state with private choice. It has given parents and students the ability to go to any school where they are accepted and like the curriculum. It has given students more control over their schooling, which has helped with keeping kids interested in school.

 

Florida definitely has the most educational choice programs out of any other state. If you are a student in the Sunshine State, you can choose to go to a magnet program, homeschooling program, virtual schooling, private school, or charter school. There is also a tuition-based scholarship program that you can apply for to help you go to the school of your choice.

 

Philanthropy has been a major reason why these educational reforms are so successful, according to Devos. She has received donations from Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and Sam Walton, as well as millions from her own foundation. While many believe that public funding is going towards private education, Devos says that isn’t true and it’s a misunderstanding because people haven’t given the idea a chance.

 

Recently, Devos has been more concerned with school safety as she has met with legislators and security officials over how to keep guns off school campuses. The school year just started and many campuses have increased security and new policies to help prevent school shootings as seen before.

 

Visit www.betsydevos.com to learn more.

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