Betsy DeVos is a name that has become more familiar to the general pubic in recent years. Before becoming the Secretary of Education for the United States, she was mainly known to the residents of the state of Michigan. DeVos was born in Holland, Michigan where a large Dutch community is known to exist, and this community highly favors educational choice. This view of the educational system has shaped DeVos’s own view and has been a motivating factor in her life to make changes to a system that she views as somewhat broken.
In Michigan, Betsy DeVos is known as a tough, determined, and ethical woman who has been fighting for the educational rights of the people for most of her life. She attended Calvin College, a private Christian college, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in business administration. There, she became more interested in politics and has been ever since. After her college days, Betsy DeVos served as the chairman for the Michigan Republican Party and also worked to change legislation in the state that she believed was failing the people.
Just as Betsy DeVos was narrowly confirmed to serve as the Secretary of Education for the U.S., controversy hit the White House. President Trump had decided to make a move to rescind a federal policy that allowed people to choose any bathroom they wanted to use based on their gender identity. The rescinding of this policy would affect schools the most, so DeVos held a meeting with a gay and transgender representative from the educational department and warned them what was coming. She also admitted that she wasn’t in full agreement with Trump’s decision but didn’t show this in public. This caused some politicians and other people to think that Devos might end up being a meek team player who just did what she was told. For those who know DeVos, nothing could have been further from the truth.
Betsy DeVos has always been a woman who picks her battles, and she usually picks them well. Instead of making her opinion known, she decided to continue fighting for what she has been fighting to achieve for years. On the eve of her confirmation as Secretary of Education, she contacted the two leaders of the largest teachers unions in the nation and tried to set up a meeting. Randi Weingarten graciously accepted while Lily Eskelsen Garcia declined. It is no secret that Garcia’s politics had something to do with her turning down the meeting, but DeVos moved forward as she always has. Her ability to cross over party lines to do what is best for Americans is already well known to those in Michigan. Soon, the rest of the country will become more aware of this, too.
To learn more, visit www.betsydevos.com.