80,000 Teachers Give Betsy DeVos an "F"
AFT and NEA are locked out of the Department of Ed as they try to deliver 80,000 failing report card to DeVos
Over the past few weeks, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the National Education Association (NEA) have been asking their members to send in report cards for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. 80,000 teachers responded, filling out questions like how she is doing advocating for full funding of public education and protecting student’s civil rights.
On Thursday, Randi Weingarten, President of the AFT, along with Lily Eskelsen García, the President of the NEA, and 100 supporters of public education attempted to deliver the report cards to DeVos at the Department of Education. Instead of using the event as an opportunity to have a constructive conversation with the leaders of the two largest Teachers Unions in the country, DeVos ordered the building locked down, preventing them from delivering the letters.
According to the Washington Post, the building is usually open 24 hours a day. Instead of listening to the concerns of teachers from across the country, DeVos decided to lock out the teachers, locking the doors of the building from 2:00 PM until 3:30 PM.
About 90% of the respondents to the survey gave DeVos a failing grade. Some of their chief concerns included proposing a budget for the Education Department that cuts funding by $9 Billion and rollbacks to protections for disabled students.
“This is a remarkable moment,” Weingarten said. “They knew that teachers and parents and students from all over the country have actually taken their time to say what is going on in their schools. And here on Betsy DeVos’ anniversary, this is the first time that I have ever been to this building where we were not let in- where the educators, where the students, where the parents of America were locked out of the federal Department of Education.”
After Education officials refused to accept the report cards, the AFT and NEA kept the cards and plan to deliver them on another day when DeVos is a little more friendly to teachers, parents, and students.