Don't Tread on Me

Don't Tread on Me

The bleak reality is that there’s little we can do right now to defend public education against the federal government. I kept thinking of a yellow flag with a snake coiled in the middle and the words “Don’t Tread on Me” printed in all caps at the top. How ironic that many of the same people who proudly boast that motto are the very ones who voted for President Trump, who then appointed DeVos to her post. As a public school teacher and as a parent of two girls in public schools, I am sick and tired of being tread on. I’m exasperated, and “fighting the good fight” takes time and energy that I often don’t have after a mentally and physically exhausting day at work.

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Tennessee, You're the Best "D" I See

Tennessee, You're the Best "D" I See

U.S. Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, recently spoke at ALEC’s 44th annual meeting. In case you’re wondering who ALEC is, their website states that they are “America’s largest nonpartisan, voluntary membership organization of state legislators dedicated to the principles of limited government, free markets and federalism.” Coincidentally, the tenets of limited government, free markets, and federalism align perfectly with the Republican Party, which makes it baffling how ALEC successfully advertises itself as a nonpartisan organization.

In any case, DeVos made several superficially common-sense statements during her seventeen minute speech that were unfortunately interwoven with gross inaccuracies.

At the beginning of her speech, she made the inarguable point that there needs to be more local control of public education. “Leaders in each state are better able to understand their own circumstances. They are more able to devise solutions than someone perched in Washington, D.C.” The reason why this point is inarguable is because it is not open for debate. Secretary DeVos apparently fails to understand the bipartisan Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) passed last year so that states could have more autonomy over their own education systems.

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