Betsy Devos Thinks Michigan Can Provide More Charter School Options


United States Secretary of Education Betsy Devos said on Friday Michigan can do more in offering school choice options for students, according to the Detroit Free Press.

“There are many other states that have programs that empower families to make those choices, whether it’s a faith-based school or a virtual school, or of course choice,” she said while visiting Detroit Edison Public School Academy, which is a charter school in Michigan’s largest city.

“In some states, there are education savings accounts, where you can customize your child’s education and choose three or four or five different kinds of education providers. There are a lot of good examples in other states of what Michigan can and should look at and aspire to.”

While Devos went to the charter school, people protested her visit. The crowd of protesters shouted “babies over billionaires” and called on the Secretary of Education took fully fund Michigan’s schools.

Lakia Wilson, the executive vice president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers told the Free Press that she believes Devos needs to represent all schools and not just charter schools. However, Devos dismissed the criticism that her policy has caused Michigan schools to fail.

“I’d say that’s nonsense, first and foremost,” DeVos told the Free Press. “I’d say secondly, I think we all need to focus on doing what’s right for individual students. If we answer those questions for students, and on behalf of students, we’re going to make the right decisions all the time.”

Michigan ranked 13th in American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) state education rankings. The Great Lakes state received a C+ grade by ALEC. Furthermore, Michigan got a B rating for charter schools. The council’s rankings are based on six factors: “state academic standards, charter schools, homeschool regulation burden, private school choice, teacher quality, and digital learning.”

Yesterday, Michigan’s legislature passed an education budget where schools will receive an extra $120 to $240 per student. Charter schools will get $240 per student.

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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Battleground State NewsFollow Zachery on Twitter.
Photo “Betsy Devos” by the U.S. Department of Education. CC BY 2.0.




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