A Senate committee has delayed the confirmation hearing for Betsy DeVos, the MI school choice advocate picked by President-elect Donald Trump to lead the U.S. Department of Education.
In a letter to DeVos on Monday, Warren also faulted what she called DeVos' "paper-thin record on higher education and student debt". Critics have suggested this funding could cause a conflict of interest when she becomes part of that committee herself. She has never been a public school parent or a public school student.
"How can the public trust Ms DeVos to ensure that borrowers repay their student loans the group she chaired has failed to pay fines that were imposed almost a decade ago?" asked Columbus-area Democratic Rep. Joyce Beatty. Representative Foxx would like to see the federal government out of education policy entirely, but realizes that is not likely to happen. Alexander is a former US education secretary. But the project took on more urgency when Trump nominated DeVos.
Ed Patru, the spokesman for a group that backs DeVos' nomination, said both the fines and the current Democratic effort to highlight them are politically motivated.
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Trump has called DeVos "a brilliant and passionate education advocate".
K12 education was not a hot topic in the campaigns of 2016-in fact, it barely came up at all. "DeVos has demonstrated no previous commitment to ensuring equal educational opportunity in schools". Public schools, he says, turns out to be a sleeper issue that attracts passionate support from a diverse group of members of Congress. Consider North Carolina's largest school district, Wake County, which moved recently to shift almost 20 lower-performing traditional public schools to become charter-like schools.
"Yes, everybody will be properly vetted, as they have been in the past, and I'm hopeful that we will get up to six or seven picks of the national security team in place on day one", McConnell told PBS.
The committee also was tentatively scheduled to have a confirmation hearing on January 17 for Trump's Labor secretary nominee, Andy Puzder.
Ruth Conniff is editor-in-chief of The Progressive.