Last year, Betsy DeVos was confirmed as Secretary Of Education with nothing but her immense personal wealth and absolutely zero experience to her name. It’s the kind of inspirational, riches-to-riches story that really gets you jazzed up about the future of our country. Smash cut to this week and Betsy DeVos is appearing on 60 Minutes, doing her due diligence to get to the bottom of this whole “education” thing. Unfortunately, over the course of the interview, it becomes clear that DeVos may not really know how schools work or what a school even is.
“Well, we should be funding and investing in students. Not in school—school buildings, not institutions, not in systems,” DeVos said in response to Lesley Stahl’s question about why money should or shouldn’t be funneled away from underperforming public schools. Apparently, Betsy DeVos is under the impression that when people say, “We should give money to schools,” they mean we should throw stacks of money at the physical school building until average test scores improve. After assuming she totally nailed that answer, DeVos then went on to tout the benefits of choice when it comes to education, pausing between each word to flash her Stepford Wives smile.
Stahl did her best to decode DeVos and turned the conversation to the supposed benefits of school choice in DeVos’ home state of Michigan, where public schools continue to struggle despite students having a plethora of options. When pressed for specifics about Michigan public school performance, DeVos once again proved she can vaguely describe what schools are, saying, “I hesitate to talk about schools in general, because schools are made up of individual students attending them.” That’s just the kind of insight you hope to hear from the Secretary Of Education.
The inarticulate, nonspecific answers continued as the conversation drifted to gun control in schools, student sexual assault allegations, and what DeVos thinks about being considered “the most hated Cabinet secretary,” to which she replied, “I’m more misunderstood than anything.” Perhaps more than anyone in the Trump administration, Betsy DeVos’ success stands as a testament to how much you can achieve without knowledge or qualifications. And that’s got to be inspiring for all the students watching at home.
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