New York Times: Unimpressed by DeVos’s Clueless Performance

Betsy DeVos disclosed her vast ignorance on education and educational policy at her confirmation hearing before the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions . Her unintentionally hilarious comment about grizzly bears aside, it’s important that the public understand just how unqualified she is to head the United States Department of Education. She is not an educator, but a political and religious zealot who would undoubtedly leave the stamp of her own and her family’s ideology on education in this country–which by definition precludes sensible or effective policy. She should not be confirmed for this post.

Diane Ravitch's blog

The New York Times is called (and calls itself) “the newspaper of record.” Talk show hosts, editorial writers, and influentials read the Times. That’s why I get so frustrated by its consistently awful editorials about education, which as a rule favor the data-driven, test-and-punish approach to schooling. But its news writing about education just keeps getting better all the time.

Here is its take on DeVos’ appearance before the HELP committee: a Bronx cheer, a raspberry. The theme of the story: DeVos is in over her head. After a long run as an advocate for school choice, she has no idea about the lingo of federal education policy or about federal law. She is being asked to take charge of a department that administers aid to college students, but knows nothing about the department’s role or programs.

“Her confirmation hearing that night opened her up to new criticism: that her…

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