DeVos. Betsy DeVos.

For the first time in my lifetime, it seems a whole lot of people are suddenly passionate about the Department of Education and the Secretary title. How many of these same people know the purpose of the Department, let alone the name of the last Secretary before DeVos? If so, what were that person’s qualifications? Better yet, what were that person’s measurable results for what constitutes a successful education system? No, no. No Googling allowed.

Me. I’d like to know why DeVos is so unacceptable when juxtaposed with so many children in failing schools? I’m just searching for some modicum of consideration based on the results of policies as a basis for supporting or not supporting the new Secretary of Education.

I come from a parent point of view. My child was enrolled in a flourishing failed school system. There’s run-in-the-mill failing and then there’s allowing the pursuit of schools to fail. Flourishing in failure is not a compliment. My son was herded with almost 9,000 other children where only 27 percent of the second-graders could read at grade level. By any educational standard this is not acceptable, but what are parents to do? To listen to the anti-DeVos rhetoric, apparently, we are supposed to leave our children in a system where the downward spiral doesn’t have an end. For the sake of the collective, we are expected to sacrifice our children. Abandon opportunities. Arrest the pursuit of alternatives. In short, abdicate our parental responsibilities to do better for our children because the current system is oh so…successful?

How many people even know the names of their local school board representatives, let alone the purpose of a school board? What are parents to do when the local school district is failing? Contact the Superintendent? Address the school board? Been there, done that. We parents in California learned our lesson the hard way that it’s damn near impossible to administratively hold a school board accountable. Pop quiz! What purview does the County, State, and US departments of education have over the local board?

Year after year statistics show many Districts not improving no matter how much money is budgeted, nor how many programs are implemented. Clearly, the current education model is lacking. The carnage and casualty are the children. Forgive me if I don’t swoon over a resume of traditional qualifications. I’ve seen that kind of leadership. I’m more interested in a results-oriented approach.  With that standard in mind I’d like to know…why is DeVos so unacceptable?

Cynthia Shaffer, National Editor, Reel Urban News, from the great state of Texas covers politics, family, military, social and global issues. @CyFlys
Cynthia Shaffer, National Editor, Reel Urban News, from the great state of Texas covers politics, family, military, social and global issues. @CyFlys

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