Diane Ravitch's blog

Wisconsin Congressman Tries but Fails to Get DeVos to Acknowledge Failure of Vouchers in Milwaukee

Wisconsin Congressman Tries but Fails to Get DeVos to Acknowledge Failure of Vouchers in Milwaukee

Betsy DeVos appeared at her second Congressional hearing to defend the Department’s budget priorities. At her first hearing, she said that schools might need guns to protect against grizzlies. What she demonstrated was her masterful ability to evade and obfuscate questions, never giving a direct answer to inconvenient questions. Congressman Mark Pocan of Wisconsin tried […]

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Official in Charge of Federal Student Loan Program Resigns, Unwilling to Defend DeVos’ Policies and Mismanagement

Official in Charge of Federal Student Loan Program Resigns, Unwilling to Defend DeVos’ Policies and Mismanagement

James Runcie, the head of the agency in charge of federal student loans at the U.S. Department of Education, resigned in protest when he was directed to testify in support of Betsy DeVos’ policies before Congress. DeVos has been shifting the Department’s policies to favor debt collection agencies, not students.

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Utah: Betsy’s Pal Excited by Her Push for Vouchers

Utah: Betsy’s Pal Excited by Her Push for Vouchers

One of the wealthiest people in Utah is Patrick Byrne, who founded Overstock.com. He is a friend of Betsy DeVos and shares her passion for vouchers. Now, he says, the time is right because she’s in charge. https://www.apnews.com/aaca1fc28be4418e8493b46178c3c60b/Trump,-DeVos-embolden-supporters-of-Utah-school-vouchers Byrne funded support for vouchers in a state referendum in 2007, but it was trounced by 62-32%. […]

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Who is Behind the Assault on Public Education?

Who is Behind the Assault on Public Education?

Howard Ryan, writing in Monthly Review, analyzes the sources of support for corporate reform and privatization. Ryan writes: Over the past three decades, public schools have been the target of a systematic assault and takeover by corporations and private foundations. The endeavor is called “school reform” by its advocates, while critics call it corporate school […]

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Minnesota: Governor Dayton Blocks Reformers’ Efforts to Grant Licenses to Uncertified Teachers

Minnesota: Governor Dayton Blocks Reformers’ Efforts to Grant Licenses to Uncertified Teachers

Governor Mark Dayton of Minnesota has become a hero of public education. Despite the pleas of the entire corporate reform movement in Minnesota, Dayton vetoed a bill that would have created a pathway into teaching for uncertified teachers, legislation needed to maintain a teaching force for charter schools. http://www.brightlightsmallcity.com/minnesota-governor-disrupts-right-wing-education-reformers/

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Jeb Bush Blasts Teachers’ Unions at School Choice Meeting in Indianapolis

Jeb Bush Blasts Teachers’ Unions at School Choice Meeting in Indianapolis

Jeb Bush was honored by Betsy DeVos’ organization, the American Federation for Children, at their meeting in Indianapolis. Bush’s Foundation for Educational Ecellence is heavily funded by the technology and Bush loves to attack the schools that don’t adopt technology faster. On this occasion, he blamed teachers’ unions for standing in the way of the […]

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New Jersey: Democrats Enable Christie to Quash Dissent on the State Board of Education

New Jersey: Democrats Enable Christie to Quash Dissent on the State Board of Education

Darcie Cimarusti, a school board member in New Jersey, reports with disgust that Democratic legislators are helping outgoing Governor Chris Christie punish and replace independent members of the State Board of Education. http://mothercrusader.blogspot.com/2017/05/dont-like-chris-christie-blame-democrats.html?m=1 Christie, whose poll ratings now hover around 20%, proposed new deregulations for charter school teachers, which would allow uncertified teachers in charters. […]

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Pastors for Texas Children: The Voucher Vote

Pastors for Texas Children: The Voucher Vote

Pastors for Texas Children issued this statement in response to the defeat on Wednesday of a voucher bill by the House of Representatives. PTC has been a strong ally of parents and educators who oppose the diversion of public funds to private and religious schools. “The Texas House of Representatives resoundingly repudiated private school vouchers […]

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DeVos: Supporters of Public Education Have “Chilled Creativity”

DeVos: Supporters of Public Education Have “Chilled Creativity”

When Betsy DeVos spoke in Indianapolis, she took aim at critics of her desire to turn public dollars over to a free market of private and religious schools. The critics, she said, have “chilled creativity.” Education secretary: School choice opponents have ‘chilled creativity’ – CNN https://apple.news/A834kMwEdTieEqmzkXofF1Q If anyone knows of any creativity that has emanated […]

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Jennifer Berkshire: The Massachusetts Charter School That Banned Black Hair Braids Backs Down

Jennifer Berkshire: The Massachusetts Charter School That Banned Black Hair Braids Backs Down

Jennifer Berkshire reviews here the recent uproar created by Mystic Valley Regional Charter School’s policy of banning certain black hair styles. This is known as #braidgate. The charter has many problems. It does not listen to its “customers.” It has been the source of numerous complaints from parents, teachers, and students. Usually, it ignores the […]

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Arthur Camins: Trump’s Education Budget is “Cruel and Unusual Punishment”

Arthur Camins: Trump’s Education Budget is “Cruel and Unusual Punishment”

Arthur Camins, writing at the Huffington Post,analyzes the Trump-DeVos education budget and declares it to be “cruel and unusual punishment,” targeted to harm the nation’s neediest children. http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/us_59243736e4b07617ae4cbf7f He writes: “President Trump’s budget proposal violates the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment. The crime it punishes is not being wealthy, […]

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Esquire: “Is There a Point to All This Cruelty?”

Esquire: “Is There a Point to All This Cruelty?”

Charles P. Pierce blogs regularly for Esquire, and he is one of the few mainstream writers who understands the creeping (now galloping) privatization of public education and knows that it is a very bad thing for our society. You will enjoy reading this post, unless you are Betsy DeVos. With the proposed budget cuts to […]

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Betsy DeVos Will Testify Today on Capitol Hill, Extolling Charters and Choice

Betsy DeVos Will Testify Today on Capitol Hill, Extolling Charters and Choice

Politico Morning Education has an advance copy of DeVos’ testimony. She will defend the administration’s draconian budget cuts by asserting that choice is the only “reform” that matters. EDUCATION SECRETARY BETSY DEVOS TO FACE LAWMAKERS: DeVos is back on Capitol Hill today to testify for the first time since her contentious confirmation hearing. She could […]

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Arizona: Vouchers Used by Students from Good Schools in Affluent Districts, Not Low-Income Students from Bad Schools

Arizona: Vouchers Used by Students from Good Schools in Affluent Districts, Not Low-Income Students from Bad Schools

The Arizona Republic conducted an analysis to learn which students were using vouchers. Remember that vouchers are supposed to “save poor kids from failing schools.” But that is not what is happening in Arizona! As Arizona’s school-voucher program has expanded rapidly in the past year, students using taxpayer aid to transfer from public to private […]

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South Carolina: New Charters Built with EB-5 Visa Boondoggles

South Carolina: New Charters Built with EB-5 Visa Boondoggles

You may recall reading a story recently about Jared Kushner’s sister soliciting investments in Kushner real estate deals at a meeting in Beijing, where she promised that investors of at least $500,000 would get a green card in exchange. Investing in charter school construction is another way in which the EB-5 visas are up for […]

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