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Education Politics

Betsy DeVos promotes real Black history, real education reform with 1776 Unites

President Trump’s Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos helped progress the efforts of the private 1776 Unites project and other education reforms this week as alternatives to the New York Times’ Marxist-inspired 1619 Project that attempts to blame white supremacy and capitalism for slavery in the U.S.

1776 Unites was launched by prominent Black educators to reject the grievance-based, politically-driven agenda of the 1619 Project and includes noted linguist John McWhorter and scholar Ian Rowe.

DeVos, while speaking to Ian Rowe of the American Enterprise Institute about school choice at a conference, was careful to say that the federal government shouldn’t be crafting textbooks, but said that she wholeheartedly supported the private effort of the 1776 Unites group, reports Politico.   

“The federal government, the Department of Education, does not have a role in a national curriculum. Curriculum is best left to the states and local districts at local education agencies, but we can talk about curriculum that actually honors and respects our history and embraces all of the parts of our history and continues to build on that,” she said. “Because we know that if we do not know and understand history, we are bound to repeat it.

“And yet, I think, there are a lot of young people — even my children’s generation and younger — that probably have not been exposed to our history in a way that helps them really appreciate from whence we came and the need to protect what we have, to build on what we have, to acknowledge where we have to continue to improve. But not to forget what our foundations are,” DeVos added.

Rowe, who is Black, is a New York charter school and education executive and helped develop and launch the 1776 Unites project along with civil rights leader Bob Woodson.

When asked specifically about the 1776 curriculum, DeVos praised the effort saying simply, it “sounds really wonderful.”

That should surprise no one as DeVos comes to the job as a reputation as a reformer, a strong advocate for school choice, especially in minority communities. President Trump gave DeVos the broadest mandate amongst her peers to truly transform public education in America.

She has pointed to the alternatives the COVID has created as an example of how Big Box public education has failed poor and minority communities.  

“This COVID crisis has laid bare the fact that families with means are always going to figure out a solution because they have those financial resources,” DeVos told Fox News. “The ones without — those kids are the ones who are going to get hurt the most. And we need to ensure that those parents have the choices and the opportunity to make those choices.”

PHOTO: REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

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