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Elizabeth Warren: 'Betsy DeVos is the worst Secretary of Education' ever

Aarthi Swaminathan
Finance Writer

Presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) took a shot at the Department of Education’s Betsy DeVos on Monday, calling her “the worst Secretary of Education we’ve seen.”

In an email to supporters, Warren, who has also called for a broad cancellation of student debt, said that “we need to make sure the Department of Education actually works for our students and our educators.” Warren, a former teacher, added: “Betsy DeVos is the worst Secretary of Education we’ve seen. She and her team are up to their eyeballs in conflicts of interest. Instead of championing our students, they protect for-profit colleges that break the law and cheat them.”

Warren then promised that in her administration, “the Secretary of Education will be a former public school teacher who is committed to public education.”

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (R) speaks as President Donald Trump (L) listens at the White House February 14, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

‘Let’s get a person with real teaching experience’

DeVos — who belongs to an extremely wealthy and powerful family in Michigan, is a top GOP donor, and is a sister of Erik Prince, the founder of controversial private security firm Blackwater — was confirmed as education secretary in February 2017 by President Donald Trump.

Her family apparently owns a fleet of 12 private jets and four helicopters.

Experts criticized her policies to improve public education, including her recent effort to reevaluate the student loan crisis by hiring global consulting firm McKinsey.

“Let’s get a person with real teaching experience,” Warren’s statement asserted. “A person who understands how low pay, tattered textbooks, and crumbling classrooms hurt students and educators. A person who understands the crushing burden of student debt on students and young professionals and who is committed to actually doing something about it.”

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks at a Service Employees International Union forum on labor issues, Saturday, April 27, 2019, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

Because “our teachers are being crushed right now,” Team Warren’s statement added. “Too many have to work another job to make ends meet, are weighed down by student debt, and struggle to teach on shoestring budgets and insulting salaries.”

In a recent study, American teachers were found to be paid poorly compared to other college graduates, creating a “large and growing” teacher shortage.

Warren added that “this problem is bigger than Betsy DeVos. She’s the symptom of a badly broken system. We’re up against powerful forces, and to win, we need big, structural change.”

Like other pressing issues facing U.S. society, Warren added that “I’ve got a plan for exactly that.”

The short version is that she wants to use her Ultra-Millionaire Tax to invest in Universal Child Care and pre-K for all kids, raise pre-school teachers’ salaries, cancel student debt, and form teachers’ unions.

“Wouldn’t it be amazing to have a former public school teacher in the White House?” she asked.

Aarthi is a writer for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @aarthiswami.

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