Betsy DeVos seems to believe she is doing God’s work when it comes to education in America.
So, I thought this Christmas I would gather some of my favorite Bible verses for her to mull over. He is the reason for the season after all.
Merry Christmas, Betsy DeVos!
The New Republican Tax Bill and Poor Kids
If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that?
There are so many Bible verses indicating that Jesus loves the poor. He doesn’t seem too keen on the wealthy. What seems certain, is that he expects much from them.
What would Jesus think of the Republican tax bill? U.S. News and World Report is claiming it is a victory for Betsy DeVos and her choice agenda.
The New York Times is reporting that this bill will hurt public schools through the expansion of 529 education savings accounts.
Expanding 529 plans to deliver state deductions to private school families will erode the tax base that funds public schools, affecting high-poverty schools the most. By limiting state and local tax deductions at the same time, Republicans would make it harder for states and cities to raise taxes to make up for those shortfalls.
Public school haters will like this, but it will hurt poor students. Remember, ninety percent of America’s children attend public schools. The wealthy who already have their children in fancy private schools will get a nice tax break.
Poor kids might get choice but it won’t be enough for them to get into the best private schools. That’s always been the problem with choice. Poor children will be segregated into a variety of substandard, unregulated, “no excuses” charter and religious schools.
He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
Betsy DeVos’s recent commentary in Education Week entitled “Tolerating Low Expectations for Children with Disabilities Must End” was particularly judgmental of teachers who work every day with children who have disabilities. It was offensive. The term “high expectations” is out of the NCLB playbook.
DeVos doesn’t understand the heart of a dedicated special education teacher. There’s a shortage of special education teachers. Many will no longer work in classrooms where they are not supported. Parents will no longer have access to protection for their children in public schools.
Betsy DeVos has never taught children, let alone those with disabilities. She really has no right to criticize. Nor is she supportive.
She also repeatedly refers to Endrew F. vs. Douglas County School District, yet the parents of that child have said they don’t want to be her poster child for choice.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth….
Most of the teachers I know are not meek, nor do they waste time mourning. They focus on what’s important—the children they teach and the issues surrounding them. But I still think they will inherit the earth.
They overcome crummy buildings, huge class sizes, the lack of materials, sometimes even the barest necessities. They plow through the obstacles created by the corporate reformers like Betsy DeVos who judge from afar.
Teachers help children create art work when their art classes are eliminated. They wipe runny noses, and clean themselves off when they get vomited on during flu season. Teachers listen. They cry with their kids when they experience loss. Here’s just one of my past tributes to teachers.
Every day, strong, well-prepared teachers stay in the classroom despite policies made by Betsy DeVos and her ilk.
They strike me as the kind of people Jesus would like to hang out with no matter their religious beliefs.
When our democratic public schools are gone, when we have rich schools and poor schools, and for some students, no schools, and all those dedicated teachers are replaced by screens, what will Jesus think about all that?
Merry Christmas, Betsy DeVos. Enjoy your eggnog.