What Betsy DeVos Could Mean For Public Education

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Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Education Secretary, sits with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., before the start of their meeting on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Susan Walsh/AP)

With guest host Jane Clayson.

The confirmation hearings for Trump’s controversial Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos. We’ll unpack the tough questions for the school vouchers advocate.

Betsy DeVos was schooled yesterday on Capitol Hill. Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education was grilled on her finances and views on public spending, sexual assault on college campuses, and guns in schools. She was even asked if she’s against public schools. How did she defend herself? And what will education policy be in the Trump years? Up next, On Point: Betsy DeVos and the Trump lesson plan for America.


Michael Stratford, education reporter for POLITICO Pro. (@mstratford)

Michael Petrilli, president of Thomas B. Fordham Institute. Executive editor of Education Next. Author of “The Diverse Schools Dilemma.” (@MichaelPetrilli)

Susan Demas, editor and publisher of Inside Michigan Politics. (@sjdemas)

Douglas Harris, professor of economist at Tulane University. Director of the Education Research Alliance for New Orleans. Co-author, with Randi Weingarten, of of “Value-Added Measures in Education.” (@douglasnharris)

From The Reading List

POLITICO Magazine: How Betsy DeVos Used God and Amway to Take Over Michigan Politics — “Thanks to the DeVoses, Michigan’s charter schools enjoy a virtually unregulated existence. Thanks to them, too, the center of the American automotive industry and birthplace of the modern labor movement is now a right-to-work state. They’ve funded campaigns to elect state legislators, established advocacy organizations to lobby them, buttressed their allies and primaried those they disagree with, spending at least $100 million on political campaigns and causes over the past 20 years.”

Detroit Free Press: Betsy DeVos faces questions before Senate committee — “A caravan of parents, teachers and community members from Detroit planned to load onto two buses early today and trek to Washington, some hoping to provide testimony to sway lawmakers to vote against the confirmation of west Michigan native Betsy DeVos’ nomination to the nation’s top education job.”

NPR News: A Former Education Secretary’s Advice For Betsy DeVos  — “Since he began running for president, Donald Trump has been talking about a smaller federal role in education. The confirmation hearings began Tuesday for the person he has nominated to carry out his vision, Betsy DeVos. In her home state of Michigan, DeVos has been a powerful advocate of school choice and a larger private role in education. If confirmed, she’ll take over a huge federal bureaucracy of some 4,400 employees and a $68 billion budget.”


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