“Next in importance to freedom and justice is popular education with which neither freedom nor justice can be permanently maintained.” James Garfield
I am a Michigander, so I can see the damage that has been done to Michigan public schools by Betsy Devos’ plans to create the charter school system here. She has used ‘alternative facts’ to support her plan for Charter schools in Michigan. DeVos is a lobbyist not an educator. She used her enormous wealth to establish the Great Lakes Education Project which is a PAC used to lobby in favor of charter schools.
DeVos has essentially created a whole industry, whose main purpose is to use public money meant for compulsory education, to support charter schools. She donates millions to the PAC which is used to “encourage” the republican led legislature to support her plans for charter schools.
One thing to remember when comparing the success of charter and private schools to public schools is that public schools must accept everyone, while religious and charter schools may cherry pick the ‘best students’ and deny admittance to other ‘less desirable’ students. Yet charter schools in Michigan do not test as well as most public schools. DeVos paid $25,000 per day to republican legislators and the Republican Party in Michigan and managed to defeat a bi-partisan bill meant to establish oversight in Detroit schools. Believe me; oversight is definitely needed in Detroit.
According to The Washington Post, “Largely as a result of the DeVos’ lobbying, Michigan tolerates more low-performing charter schools than just about any other state. And it lacks any effective mechanism for shutting down, or even improving, failing charters.” The use of ‘alternative facts’ in promoting failing religious and charter schools is a recurring problem in the DeVos PAC.