Reforming the Education Department is the Goal of Betsy DeVos

Throughout her life Betsy DeVos has had an ingest in reforming education. At her alma mater Calvin College, Betsy DeVos joined in on discussions of campus politics. Since her time at Calvin College, she has went m to be involved with various other political ventures. She’s been involved with assisting political campaigns and involved with political action committees. She served as the chairperson for the Republican Michigan Party.


Politically her family are also reformers. Her husband Dick DeVos ran on a campaign of reform when he was the Republican candidate for the Michigan governor race in 2006. Betsy helped out closely with her husband’s campaign to get his reformist ideas out there to voters in Michigan. Dick DeVos shares his wife’s interests in politics, reform, and philanthropy.


The manner Betsy DeVos has been most influential with reform is with her philanthropy. Betsy and her family run the Dick and Betsy DeVos family foundation. She also works with a variety of other charities. Primarily, the focus of the philanthropy Betsy works on is connected to education. In particular, her education philanthropy is aimed at school choice for students and their families. Betsy DeVos is now performing more direct examples of school reform for school choice as education secretary.


School choice is by no means a new concept. Milton Friedman wrote of the benefits of school choice in his book “The Role of Government in Education” around half a century ago. A quarter of a century ago Wisconsin was the first state in the nation to utilize a school choice plan through the use of vouchers. Betsy DeVos supports the idea of using education money toward funding voucher systems for some students to be places in a charter or private school that would be more appropriate for their education needs.


In part due to Betsy DeVos’s efforts, 250,000 students are currently attending public funded private choice programs. The programs stretch across 17 different states and in the nation’s capital. In the last year the number of students in these public funded private choice programs grew by 40,000 students. Secretary of Education DeVos has stated in an interview with Philanthropy Round Table that this is proof the movement of school choice is really beginning to take off. She hopes this means school choice will be further implanted while she serves the country as education secretary. Her goal to reform the education department will encourage school choice and other new ideas with the students in mind.


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