November 21, 2017

Gordon Hayward Injured -

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Mrs. Tribuzi, Dance Teacher Extraordinaire -

Monday, October 30, 2017

theSkimm: The Millennial Generation of News -

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Cross Country Runs into the 2017 Season -

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Should You Attend the Women’s Marches? -

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Bearcats Blown Away by Chalk Fest -

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The New Tardy Policy Pilot Is Over -

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

SMHS Chalk Fest is an Instant Successes -

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Chalk Fest is Shaping Up Well This Year -

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Boys Volleyball Season Comes to a Close -

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Bearcat Chefs Compete in Nacho Contest -

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Bearcat Invitational Track Meet a Huge Success -

Monday, May 8, 2017

Concert Band Prepares for Spring Concert -

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Students: “Beware the Banality of a Busy Life” -

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Roger Federer Proves he is the GOAT -

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Coach John Tells Us About Boys Tennis -

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Olaiha Fonua and His Friend Perform at Green Week -

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Eureka, We Built It! -

Thursday, April 20, 2017

International Week Celebrates Diversity -

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

International Week Shines -

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Betsy May Be DeWrong Choice for Secretary of Education

devosOn Feb. 7, 2017, Betsy DeVos was confirmed to be the next Secretary of Education. As the country was still reeling after many of Trump’s decisions, this was yet another shock. The nerve-wracking final vote to confirm DeVos’s 51-50 election was cast by Vice President Mike Pence, thus creating another win for the Republican party.

Part of the cause for controversy was that DeVos was unquestionably ill-prepared for her confirmation hearing. Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy asked her a question about whether or not she believed guns should be allowed on school campuses, and DeVos replied by mentioning the possibility of keeping one in a school in Wapiti, Wyoming due to “potential grizzlies.” According to CNN, the school mentioned by DeVos does not permit weapons on campus as schools often do and it has a 10 foot fence to protect its 10 students from cougars and grizzlies.

When asked if she agreed on equal accountability for all K-12 schools that receive public funding, DeVos repeatedly replied, “I support accountability,” while refusing to give a yes or no answer on whether she supported equal accountability. Her lack of knowledge on important topics such as the federal law involving students with disabilities is not a favorable quality. In fact, DeVos might not have been elected, if not for the change in the Senate rules in 2013 (during Obama’s presidency) that allowed for a nominee to be confirmed with 51 votes, according to Vox.

As Secretary of Education, she should have a better answer than “I think that is a matter that is best left to the states.”

Let’s talk about the matters that she does take into her own hands. In Michigan, DeVos has pushed to defund public schools through school vouchers, and funnel this funding into charter schools. Charter schools receive government funding, but aren’t held to the same standards as public schools; furthermore, they often function independently. Those who support DeVos say that she will work towards programs that will offer families choice on where to send their students. Many of the schools in Michigan that have been affected “have recorded student test scores in reading and math below the state average,” as according to the Washington Post. If this is the result of change under DeVos, how will the country fare, now that she is the Secretary of Education?

Billionaire Elisabeth Dee “Betsy” DeVos; philanthropist, former Republican Party chairwoman in Michigan, former chair of the American Federation for Children and advocate of “school choice,” has previously been active in politics, and now has a shiny, new title to add to her collection Secretary of Education. Her website states, “As a result of AFC’s (American Federation for Children) work, over one million children are now in the school of their parents’ choice, instead of being trapped by their zip code in a school that failed to meet their needs.” I agree that school choice is important, but what if all of the schools available to you fail to yield sufficient test scores and results? DeVos is passionate about her work and beliefs, but perhaps she is misguided.

Ironically, in a tweet by the U.S. Department of Education, W.E.B. Du Bois’s name was spelled “DeBois,” an insult to the civil rights activist, historian, sociologist and co-founder of the NAACP. Then, in response to the mistake, the department tweeted, “Post updated our deepest apologizes for the earlier typo.” Someone needs to (spell) check themselves; even a third grader could catch this mistake.

As time progresses, so do the amount of protests that sprout up.

Recently, Trump repealed the federal protections that had previously allowed transgender students to use the bathroom corresponding to their gender identity. DeVos was uncertain on signing off on this order, and expressed her worry of harm that could come to transgender students, according to the New York Times. Unfortunately, in the end, President Trump pushed her to either sign off on the order or resign from her position. So, DeVos relented and signed the order. To rub salt in the wound, DeVos stated that bathroom access was not a federal matter (according to the NY Times).

According to the Huffington Post, on Feb. 23, Betsy DeVos began her speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference by introducing herself, then throwing in a joke. What was this joke? Well, DeVos said that she was “perhaps the first person to tell Bernie Sanders to his face that there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Not a great way to start off. And definitely, an insensitive joke, considering the number of students more than 31 million who receive free or reduced-price lunches through the National School Lunch Program. Of the responses garnered, the one by “tags7453” broke my heart. This user tweeted, “When I ate lunch with my granddaughter, the only kids who finished lunch were the kids getting free lunches. Think about that. #feedthekids.” Although the statement by DeVos was merely a weak attempt to poke fun at the cost of government programs, it was not taken lightly, as hunger is a serious, undeniable issue.

The future of our education system is treading in dangerous waters. There may not be much that we can do, but we can certainly educate ourselves on these issues. Mainstream media isn’t always the “enemy of the American people,” as Trump likes to call it; it is where we can find the truth, and save ourselves b4 itz to late.

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