8/31/2017 – Like Her Boss, Betsy DeVos Makes A Disaster All About Herself

THIS WEEK: Americans Support Public Schools … Closing Schools Harms Students … Resegregation’s Toll … DACA In Danger … Charters Segregate


Like Her Boss, Betsy DeVos Makes A Disaster All About Herself

By Jeff Bryant

“While President Trump’s boastful comments about crowd size at his tour of Hurricane Harvey’s devastation in Houston struck some as egotistical and self-aggrandizing, his Education Secretary Betsy DeVos had a similar performance in Florida, where she robotically recited her favorite talking points against a backdrop of a slow-motion catastrophe striking the state’s public schools … What’s hitting Florida’s public schools may not directly endanger lives as Hurricane Harvey did, but it will surely exact a heavy toll on the Sunshine State’s education infrastructure. Yet DeVos calls the state ‘a role model for the nation.'”
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Americans Express Support For Traditional Public Schools In New Poll, Even As Trump Disparages Them

The Washington Post

“According to a new national survey … a majority of public school parents give higher grades – A’s and B’s – to the traditional public schools in their neighborhoods than they have in years. A majority of Americans polled also said they oppose programs that use public money for private and religious school education, policies that are supported by President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos … DeVos has called the traditional public education system a ‘dead end,’ and Trump has repeatedly disparaged public schools as ‘failing’ … the proportion of Americans who give their community’s public schools an A grade is at its highest in more than 40 years.”
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Closing Low-Performing Schools More Likely To Negatively Affect Black And Hispanic Students: Report

The Root

“The push to close low-performing schools has increased. A recent study has concluded that when those closures happen, schools that serve predominantly black and Hispanic students are most likely to be affected … Low-performing charter and public schools with a larger share of black and Hispanic students were more likely to be closed … Less than half of those displaced students ended up at a school that was better than the one they left.”
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When School Districts Resegregate, More Black And Hispanic Students Drop Out


“After courts lift school desegregation orders, students of color are more likely to drop out … Court-mandated integration efforts across the U.S. have sharply declined … Of 480 school districts that had an integration order in place in 1991 … 214 had the court order eliminated by 2010 … Lifting the court orders led to a sustained increase in dropout rates among Hispanic students of 3 percentage points, and black students of 1 percentage point, compared to similar districts where mandates remained. White students were no more or less likely to drop out.”
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‘Dreamer’ Plan That Aided 800,000 Immigrants Is Threatened

The New York Times

“In a showdown over a five-year-old initiative, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, which has granted permission to stay and work to about 800,000 immigrants … brought illegally to the United States as children … key players in his administration have advised Mr. Trump to wind down the program, and his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, has informed him he considers it unconstitutional and cannot defend it in court … Trump has been pondering – and publicly agonizing over – what to do … a decision by the administration not to defend it ‘would almost certainly spell a death knell for the program.'”
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With Charter Schools, A Step Back To Segregation

The Progressive

California university professor Julian Vasquez Heilig writes, “Considering the rapid growth of charter schools, it’s important for the public conversations about school choice to distinguish fact from rhetoric and sloganeering … The predominance of peer-reviewed research … has demonstrated that school choice is exacerbating existing patterns of segregation … One research study found that charter schools are ‘more racially isolated than traditional public schools’ … Charters are influencing and intensifying racial segregation across the nation. After several decades, the promise of charter schools to foster integration and a less balkanized society is clearly not being realized.”
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