If you have a child or know someone with children going into the educational system then the installation of Betsy DeVos as the Secretary of Education has probably been on your radar. Betsy DeVos joins the United States Education Department as a strong advocate for school choice and a tireless worker trying to make it happen. We’ve seen DeVos work hard over the years as an advocate for school choice and now she is getting her largest platform yet to maneuver the policy. Let’s take a look at an interview between Betsy DeVos and Philanthropy Roundtable in which she got the chance to really expound on a variety of her positions, her philanthropic work, and her vision for the future of U.S. education.
The world of school choice is rapidly growing and evolving in front of our very eyes. It used to be that the concept of educational choice was considered fairly, well, radical. Despite this position Betsy DeVos never shied away from her stance. Now we can see that her work, and others like her, have brought school choice and educational reform right back into the mainstream. Betsy DeVos points out that there are now 17 different states, comprised of over 30 programs, where 250,000 or more children are engaging in the school choice policy. Betsy DeVos says simply, “I’ve never been more optimistic.” She goes on to say that the program is continuing to evolve in front of their very eyes.
If you had to gauge when Betsy DeVos got on board with educational reform you would have a hard time pinning it down, exactly. Betsy DeVos and her husband Dick DeVos have been in the public circle for decades now as they’ve worked politically in Michigan. Dick DeVos ran for Governor of Michigan while Betsy herself is a chairman on the Michigan Republican Part. Being in these positions of political influence brought the DeVos family closer than ever to seeing just how their constituents were living and what they wanted out of education. Betsy, having children of her own, would visit schools to see firsthand what parents were looking for. DeVos says, “While we were at the school, we met parents who were doing everything in their power to have their kids in an environment that was safe, where they were learning, and where the atmosphere was just electric with curiosity.”
Outside of school choice, Betsy DeVos is interested in bringing reform to the entire educational mode> She says that she is tired of seeing education as a ‘zip code’ where students are assigned to schools. DeVos is going to be fighting for free movement of education, digital learning, and educational choice at pretty much every level. Visit Betsy’s profile page on facebook.com.