Leftists harass new education secretary DeVos during school visit


New Education Secretary Betsy DeVos prompted a wave of outrage on Twitter with a tweet celebrating her first day on the job - and was blocked by protesters during her first school visit.

As The Washington Post's Ed O'Keefe reports, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was the first secretary of state nominee in USA history to ever have to clear various procedural hurdles before a final confirmation vote.

Two Republicans, Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, joined Democrats in a marathon effort to derail the nomination of the wealthy Republican donor.

The Washington Teachers Union, which organized the protest outside the school, also said it did not approve of those barring her entry. She has always been a strong advocate for school choice, including vouchers and unregulated for-profit charter schools.

The education secretary was met by the protesters at the school's back entrance after a parent-teacher demonstration apparently blocked the road by the front entrance. "Her leadership and drive will deliver meaningful reforms and start a new chapter for all children - no matter race, socioeconomic status, or zip code - to have access to high-quality schools". "There is a need for growth and progress, we want to be lifelong learners".

Close attention also will be paid to how DeVos deals with sexual assault and freedom of speech on campuses.

In recent years, DeVos has argued that it's about choice - saying parents should be able to choose where they send their kids to school. She faced criticism and ridicule for a perceived lack of experience and confusion during her confirmation hearing.

Much as Apple positively disrupted the mobile technology space or Uber disrupted the taxi cartels or Amazon disrupted, well, everything, America's public education system needs disruption.

DeVos has her work cut out.

A few months ago, few people would have predicted DeVos would be confirmed on a 51-50 vote, the narrowest confirmation vote of a Cabinet nominee ever. Although it may take some time to find a good match, volunteering directly with students in a way that will enrich their education, regardless of politics, is both rewarding and effective. To save our public schools! Why?

Political and media advocacy for this system led us to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and a tomorrow with no national public education.

DeVos issued a statement after the incident where she said she was "honored" to meet with the school about 'our shared commitment to public education'. And as the stunning number of student names on charter school waiting lists demonstrates, the hunger for a better option than the local public school is anything but theoretical.

Demonstrators awaited DeVos' arrival at Jefferson Middle School Academy on Friday.

Really, the only way you can sustain an argument that charter schools are un-American is to do away with the ethos of the founding all together, and interpret the American experience from 1840 on; then, I suppose, you have a case.



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