Commentary on US K-12 Governance

Alan Borsuk:

As expected, she spoke up for school choice. “Why in 2017 are we still questioning parents’ ability to exercise educational choice for their children?” DeVos said. “I’m a firm believer that parents should be empowered to choose the learning environment that is best for each of their individual children.”

But she was, at best, hazy on a host of education matters that will be big parts of what she is responsible for, assuming she is confirmed.

Her thoughts on protecting the rights of students with disabilities? She thought such matters should be left to the states. She admitted to being “confused” when it was pointed out that there was a long-standing federal law on this that she would be responsible for enforcing.

There’s an ongoing debate over whether it is better to measure the student performance (particularly among high-needs students) by how much progress they are making or by whether they meet specific standards for proficiency. Which does DeVos favor? You certainly couldn’t figure that out from her murky answer.