UC Berkeley is an exceptional institution whose history includes the 1964-65 protests that gained fame as the Free Speech Movement. Long known as a hotbed of left-wing activism, it has lately gained attention as a place where right-wingers venture at their peril. In February, the administration abruptly called off a talk by then-Breitbart News troll Milo Yiannopoulos after protesters threw stones and firebombs and smashed windows.
The efforts by Alliance College-Ready Public Schools to stop the union drive that began in March 2015, when 67 teachers and counselors said they wanted to join United Teachers Los Angeles, also included $2.2 million in donated legal fees, hiring an array of campaign consultants routinely seen in political fights and coordinating with the California Charter School Association (CCSA), which used the private alumni files to recruit former students to their side.
As the Trump administration advances discriminatory policy, bigoted authors and activists are giving speeches along the college circuit, facilitated by right-wing nonprofits. It’s important for members of the university community to know which organizations are making this possible, and who funds them. It may prove effective for student dissenters to address AEI, YAF and Glittering Steel in their campaigns against racist speakers.
On Wednesday, DeVos formally announced Jackson’s position as deputy assistant secretary in the Office for Civil Rights, a role that does not require Senate confirmation. The 39-year-old attorney will act as assistant secretary in charge of the office until that position is filled. DeVos has not yet selected a nominee, who would have to receive Senate confirmation.
New York’s Excelsior Scholarship will launch in the fall of 2017. Around 940,000 New York families will eventually be eligible, according to a website created by the governor’s office to promote the plan. Curiously enough, the site features a photo of a smiling man who is neither college-bound nor a New York resident: Bernie Sanders.
A blockbuster report detailing how California’s charter school industry has wasted hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars by opening and building schools in communities that don’t need them and often end up doing worse than nearby public schools, is a nationwide warning about how education privateers hijack public funds and harm K-12 public schools.
In the lead-up to billionaire Republican megadonor and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos’ confirmation, numerous media outlets published deep-dive investigations into DeVos’ background, significant political contributions, potential conflicts of interest, far-right ideology, and negative influence on Michigan policies.
Camelot Education takes the students that public schools have given up on. But some current and former students say its discipline goes too far.
The muddled minds that now run the federal government think it’s fine to legally segregate public bathrooms. This is of a piece with the attitudes and beliefs that created “For whites only” drinking fountains in the Jim Crow South. If you don’t see the correlation, you have company in the White House.
Betsy DeVos is a doctrinaire right-winger who means to destroy public education, replacing it with a system of religious schools that serve the middle class and the wealthy. Implacably hostile to the public commons, she would rip apart a core asset of our democracy.
When Vice President Mike Pence cast the deciding vote that put the billionaire Betsy DeVos in charge of the Department of Education, his action highlighted once again the curious alliance between the most libertine president in American history and the most politically powerful flock of evangelical Christians Washington has ever seen.
DeVos’s free-market principles are on full display in Detroit, where for-profit charter school operators have sowed chaos without creating any educational gains. Detroit’s miserable educational outcomes are some of the worst in the nation, and liberals have pointed to them frequently in their objections to DeVos.
President Trump’s choice of billionaire Betsy DeVos to be education secretary was confirmed by the Senate, but only after Vice President Pence was called in to break a tie that threatened to defeat her. The tie-breaking vote, which Senate officials said was unprecedented to confirm a president’s Cabinet nominee, came after two Republicans joined with 46 Democrats and two independents in opposition to DeVos.
The defection of two Republican senators has imperiled President Trump’s nomination of Michigan billionaire Betsy DeVos to serve as Secretary of Education. DeVos has contributed $5,000 to Susan Collins’ campaigns, but Lisa Murkowski’s no-vote was perhaps an even bigger surprise. DeVos’ family businesses have contributed $33,400 to Murkowski’s political campaigns since 1989, according to OpenSecrets.
Betsy DeVos, President Trump’s pick as secretary of education, has funded groups that champion “intelligent design,” a sophisticated outgrowth of creationism. Science educators worry that she could use her bully pulpit to undermine the teaching of evolution in public schools.
A lawsuit in the 1990s had Alabama poised to fund poor black school districts as fairly as wealthy white schools. As state attorney general, Jeff Sessions fought the effort passionately and won. Today, Alabama’s public schools remain a story of inequality because of Sessions’ duplicitous legal jousting.
Washington confirmation hearings are both theater and ritual. Behind the ostentatious displays of deference that senators and would-be cabinet secretaries must display toward each other is a useful democratic exercise. During Betsy DeVos’ confirmation hearing, senators learned that Trump’s nominee for Education Secretary is clueless, rich, and deceptive.
Billionaire Betsy DeVos, Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Education, is clearly one of the worst cabinet picks. Her nomination to lead public education may seem curious, as DeVos has never worked in public education and supports diverting public funds to pay for kids to attend private, religious schools. Advocacy groups, Democratic politicians and ethics experts have shot up red flags in recent days, strongly opposing DeVos’ nomination.
In a country where rising student debt grabs national headlines, efforts to make college “free” can also get attention. In truth, a large part of tuition costs are already subsidized in the U.S. through a combination of grants, tax breaks and loans. What causes waves is the ever-increasing sticker price, rather than what students actually pay.
The choice of Betsy DeVos to head the Education Department mystified all those who’d figured Trump was looking for a capable, forward-looking technocrat focused on student testing and teacher accountability. The choice horrified teachers unions, as DeVos is a billionaire Republican who has worked assiduously to weaken the public schools in Michigan.
Through targeted donations, DeVos helped kick start the Flint water crisis. For years, DeVos funded the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a free market think tank. The Mackinac Center advocated for an emergency manager for Flint, promising that the manager would reduce government—and tighten the city’s budget.
Anyone who strives for a clear-eyed view of the Trump administration’s oncoming education agenda will find there is no evidence—zero—of anything other than the most extreme policy agenda for the nation’s public schools.
Under Cuomo’s plan, which he called the first of its kind in the nation, the state would cover tuition for any student from a family earning less than $125,000 a year by 2019, a means-tested benchmark that coincided with one proposed by Hillary Clinton during her presidential bid.
Conservative media have labeled higher education as a “privilege” and suggested students ought to choose fictional cheaper colleges.