According to some insider accounts, the Trump administration is a chaotic group of inexperienced appointees that can’t seem to get in the groove of serving the public without serving themselves first. Cabinet members seem to take advantage of their positions by spending too much, or by using public funds to make their traveling missions luxury excursions. But Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, the cabinet member who needed Mike Pence to break the tie in Congress in order to get the job, is not one of those Trump officials. DeVos gets high marks from some Republicans for the work she is doing to reform the education system in the United States. After more than a year in office, Mrs. DeVos has gone above and beyond to prove she worthy to be the Education Secretary. Betsy hasn’t always expressed her views in a manner that pleases the press or the voting public, but she hasn’t changed her position on expanding the charter school program. And according to people who know her, she is still quietly trying to bring state and church together in schools.
Betsy DeVos, the Holland Michigan billionaire, has a history of donating money to improve the education system not only in Michigan, but across the United States, according to a Mother Jones report. Betsy and husband Dick, the son of the co-founder of Amway, are big Republican supporters. But the couple also give money religious schools, conservation Christian groups and Betsy’s voucher program. According to a New York Times article, DeVos is polite in public, but behind closed doors she’s a fierce competitor and fighter. She believes in charter schools, and she also believes the public school system is broken and beyond repair. That’s why funding for public schools is down, and the voucher program is in full gear.
But DeVos has another mission that she didn’t discuss during her 60 Minutes interview. Some people say that interview didn’t do much to promote Betsy’s knowledge or commitment as Education Secretary. But she strongly disagrees with that synopsis of her national TV performance. The mission she didn’t talk about while the CBS cameras were rolling was her attempt to save the for-profit college industry. That industry shot itself in the foot by allowing some of those colleges to put making money in front of educating the students who thought they could get a decent education.
Betsy DeVos has taken away some Obama-era regulations that increased protection for students, and she reduced loan forgiveness relief for some former students, so the industry doesn’t completely collapse. Plus, she is trying to find the right balance between money-making schools and for-profit college students. But the days of for-profit colleges are in the past, according to an ABC News article. Regular colleges and universities are competing with the for-profit college industry, and it appears regular colleges are winning.
Students are afraid to go to for-profit schools for an obvious reason. There’s too much corruption in the for-profit history to ignore. But DeVos will still push her agenda regardless of the challenges she faces from her own party as well as from the public. The fact that she is still part of the Trump administration speaks volumes for her tenacity, and her mission to change the education playing field, so all students get a chance to shine.
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