Today, the Louisiana Federation for Children (LFC) and the National Federation for Children (NFC), the state’s voice for educational choice, released statements in congratulating the next U.S. Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, and stated that they applaud the U.S. Senate for voting to confirm an Education Secretary who will put children and families first.
“I have seen first-hand the positive impact of the education reforms Betsy DeVos has promoted for well over 20 years. This is an unprecedented opportunity in our nation’s history to make good on decades of unfulfilled promises to our children,” said Ann Duplessis, President of the Louisiana Federation for Children. “Her commitment to school choice options has helped transform the lives of hundreds of thousands of children, including those in Louisiana.”
“DeVos has been an advocate for children for nearly 30 years. She has been instrumental in expanding school choice programs nationwide, which has given students with disabilities and those from low-income families the opportunity to attend the quality school of their parents’ choice, “said Duplessis. “DeVos and her husband, Dick, also founded a high-quality, innovative charter school in western Michigan, which ranks as one of the highest-performing charter schools in the state.”
The National Federation for Children in their statement said, “On behalf of the board and staff at the American Federation for Children, we congratulate Betsy on her confirmation as U.S. Secretary of Education,” said William E. Oberndorf, Chairman of the American Federation for Children. “I have worked with Betsy for many years and I know she will challenge the status quo and fight hard every day for America’s students. This is a time of opportunity and transformation for our nation’s education system, a time to put politics aside to ensure every child, regardless of family income or ZIP code, has access to a great education and work together to improve educational outcomes across the board.”
“DeVos has been an advocate for children for nearly 30 years. She has been instrumental in expanding school choice programs nationwide, which has given students with disabilities and those from low-income families the opportunity to attend the quality school of their parents’ choice, “said Oberndorf. “DeVos and her husband, Dick, also founded a high-quality, innovative charter school in western Michigan, which ranks as one of the highest-performing charter schools in the state.”
DeVos previously served as chairman of the American Federation for Children from 2009 until her nomination as Education Secretary in November 2016.
Michael J. Petrilli, who served in the George W. Bush Administration in the U.S. Department of Education from 2001-2005, stated that there are good reasons why Betsy DeVos will be a great Education Secretary, contrary to the Democrats and socialists opposition.
Petrilli stated, “During the Bush 43 and Obama years, the Secretary of Education has occupied a powerful role, one that has sought to influence almost every nook and cranny of education policy and practice. Particularly under Obama’s education secretaries, the feds did indeed stick their noses into curriculum, teacher evaluation, and the intricacies of serving students with disabilities, as well as who can use which restroom. Anyone assuming that the future would be a linear extension of that past might have reason to fret about DeVos.”
“Well, the big change that’s coming isn’t the change of individuals. It’s the change in the Education Department’s role. It’s not that DeVos and her team will play the Obama-era melody in a different key. It’s that they won’t be playing those tunes at all, “Petrilli said. “During her confirmation process, DeVos promised time and again to shrink Uncle Sam’s impact on the nation’s schools to devolve decisions back to states, communities, educators and parents.”
“That’s in keeping with the mandate from Congress, which just over a year ago updated the major K-12 law to expressly limit the federal role in education. The even better news is that parents and teachers can now focus that energy on changing policies closer to home, where the action is, rather than in Washington, D.C. And the U.S. Department of Education can go back to being the sleepy agency it was always meant to be.”
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