DeVos called before Congress to discuss her secret plans to dismantle public education

Betsy DeVos, Trump’s completely unqualified Secretary of Education, was called to testify before a House Appropriations subcommittee today. It would appear as though members of said subcommittee wanted to ask DeVos about next year’s Department of Education budget, which, according to recent reports from whistleblowers within the department, would eliminate regional civil rights offices, terminate dozens of programs, and significantly shrink the overall department budget, while, at the same time, instituting a $1 billion “school choice” program intended to funnel public funds away from public schools and into for-profit charters and religious schools. The following comes by way of the New York Times.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will go before a House panel on Tuesday to defend her agency’s budget, including a sweeping overhaul of the Education Department that has strained relations within her agency and with Congress — and defies the White House’s budget office.

In recent weeks, Ms. DeVos has clashed fiercely with department staff members over the plan, which they say she tried to withhold from Congress as she imposed on the department what they call an illegal collective bargaining agreement.

Ms. DeVos will testify before the House Appropriations Committee, whose staff was told a week ago that her office had withheld vital information from it regarding the department’s budget for the fiscal year that begins in October. The budget request calls for a 5 percent spending cut, eliminates dozens of programs and pitches a $1 billion school choice proposal. It also includes a shake-up of several divisions that is already underway.

A career department official unveiled details of Ms. DeVos’s “Education Reform Plan” in an email to staff members on the House and Senate Appropriations Committees. The email, obtained by The Times, said information driving budget decisions was omitted from budget justifications submitted to Congress.

“Our concern is about a breakdown in communication, a culture of secrecy and a fear of retaliatory action that has prevented Budget Service from providing House and Senate appropriators and staff, and for that matter, the public, with key information about the department’s plans for fiscal year 2019,” the email said. “Given the potential for some of these proposals to radically impact the way the department carries out its mission, Congress should probably see this.”…

I try to reserve use of the term “anti-American” for special occasions, but, if true, this deserves it. Killing civil rights initiatives, and working in secret to undermine the integrity of public education in the United States, should not only be just cause to fire a Secretary of Education, but to banish a person from civil society forever. DeVos bought her way into this position in order to dismantle the Department of Education from the inside, and we cannot allow her to be successful. Public education has always been the great equalizer in our society. We must fight to retain it.

I’d like to say more, but you know how I feel about DeVos, right?

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  1. Jean Henry
    Posted March 21, 2018 at 4:32 am | Permalink

    Also Dunning-Kruger.

  2. Wikipedia
    Posted March 21, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias wherein people of low ability suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their cognitive ability as greater than it is. The cognitive bias of illusory superiority derives from the metacognitive inability of low-ability persons to recognize their own ineptitude; without the self-awareness of metacognition, low-ability people cannot objectively evaluate their actual competence or incompetence.

    Conversely, highly competent individuals may erroneously assume that tasks easy for them to perform are also easy for other people to perform, or that other people will have a similar understanding of subjects that they themselves are well-versed in.

    As described by social psychologists David Dunning and Justin Kruger, the cognitive bias of illusory superiority results from an internal illusion in people of low ability and from an external misperception in people of high ability; that is, “the miscalibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self, whereas the miscalibration of the highly competent stems from an error about others.”

  3. Iron Lung 2
    Posted March 21, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    We need to close down all public schools. Women should stop working and supervise their kids as they learn from the free resources on the internet.

  4. Jean Henry
    Posted March 21, 2018 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Low ability is the new low class.

  5. 734
    Posted March 22, 2018 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    The father of the Austin bomber was an Amway distributor. Make of that what you will.

  6. ABC News
    Posted May 24, 2018 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Education Sec. Betsy DeVos under fire for suggesting schools should decide whether to report undocumented students and their families to federal immigration authorities.

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