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New York City education panel may vote to oppose Betsy DeVos’s confirmation

Betsy DeVos answers questions during her Jan. 17 confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.
Betsy DeVos answers questions during her Jan. 17 confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

A panel that oversees the country’s largest school system will vote Monday on a resolution opposing Betsy DeVos as U.S. Education Secretary.

The resolution by the New York City Panel for Educational Policy says that DeVos’s positions “jeopardize access” to public education, and that she “failed to demonstrate a sufficient understanding” of basic education policy at her confirmation hearing earlier this month.

Just before the PEP vote at a special meeting Monday evening, public school advocates are expected to rally in support of the resolution outside Tweed Courthouse, the city’s Department of Education headquarters.

A billionaire philanthropist who backs the deregulation of charters and use of public money to help parents pay private school tuition, DeVos faces a Senate committee vote on Tuesday.

Here is the full text of the PEP’s resolution.

Opposing confirmation of Nominee Betsy DeVos as Education Secretary

Whereas, the Panel for Educational Policy is committed to promoting the welfare of the city school district and its students, and

Whereas, President Trump has called for the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education of the United States, a candidate who appears to lack credentials as an educator or experience in the administration and management of public schools, and who has demonstrated a predisposition towards and long history of support for programs that, by their very nature, jeopardize access to free and appropriate public education for specific economic, social and racial groups, and

Whereas, Ms. Devos, during the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearings, failed to demonstrate a sufficient understanding of educational policies and implementation processes, funding mechanisms, existing accountability structures, and the oversight relationships between federal, state, and local educational agencies, and

Whereas, Ms. DeVos, during the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearings, failed to demonstrate a sufficient understanding of federal education laws such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Title IX equal education protections and enforcement of policies related to sexual harassment and sexual assault on campus, as overseen by the Office for Civil Rights,

Now therefore be it, resolved, the Panel for Educational Policy hereby opposes the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education based on this record.

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