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Letter: Looks at 'contentious' confirmation of DeVos

Published: February 19, 2017 12:00 AM

Betsy DeVos for head of the Department Education is one of many inspiring cabinet picks by President Trump. To understand why her confirmation was so contentious, a few facts have to be laid out.

One, the DOE was established by President Jimmy Carter in 1979, not out of any educational need but as reward to the teachers unions for their support. Two, the teachers unions and the Democrat Party are joined at the hip. Three, everything in Betsy DeVos' background indicates that her prime concern is the actual education of children, not the betterment of the teachers unions.

There's more. Four, blacks make up the most reliable core of the Democrat base, and much of that vote is concentrated in inner cities.

I think the above is pretty well known and accepted by most observers. What might not be commonly known is that many urban public education systems are actually dying. The Democrats' urban base of unionized teachers is disappearing by attrition, and this makes the party even more desperate to hold on to its core of black parents.

But black parents are abandoning public schools in favor of charter schools in droves. To see how extensive this hemorrhaging has become, look at the percentage of children in charter schools for these cities: Flint (53%), Kansas City (40%), Philadelphia (32%), Washington, D.C. (45%), Detroit (53%), New Orleans (92%). In Ohio, both the Cleveland and Dayton school districts have over 30% of their students in charter schools.

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And these percentages do not include children enrolled in private and parochial schools.

The Democrat rage over the DeVos nomination is the fear that as blacks flee the public schools, they soon too will abandon the ones who control those schools -- the Democrat Party. I say it's about time.

Peter Skurkiss, Stow


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