Some experts on historically black institutions panned her statement as ignorant, while others said she was inadvertently praising segregation.
By Benjamin Wermund
02/28/17 12:01 PM EST
Updated 02/28/17 03:30 PM EST
President Donald Trump’s efforts to bolster relations with historically black colleges erupted in controversy Tuesday after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos released a statement equating the history of the schools — founded during an era of racial segregation — to “school choice” policies.
“HBCUs are real pioneers when it comes to school choice,” DeVos said in the statement, released Monday night in advance of Trump’s planned signing of an executive order giving the schools more clout. “They are living proof that when more options are provided to students, they are afforded greater access and greater quality. Their success has shown that more options help students flourish.”
The executive order, which Trump signed Tuesday afternoon, was supposed be an easy bit of outreach on the final day of Black History Month to the black community that soundly rejected Trump on Election Day. It moves a federal initiative focused on the colleges from the Education Department to the White House — a move the schools had asked for, hoping it will give them better access to the president.
But the goodwill was quickly overshadowed by DeVos’ statement, which came on the heels of a Monday meeting between Trump and presidents of the schools that left some dissatisfied. Some experts on historically black institutions panned the statement as ignorant, while others said she was inadvertently praising segregation…
… DeVos also seemed to reject one thing the schools are really hoping to get from the administration: More money. One school president told POLITICO that the colleges had asked the White House to back a $25 billion investment in infrastructure improvements on their campuses in their meeting with DeVos Monday. They also advocated for year-round Pell grants and to maintain or increase funding that goes to schools that serve low-income students.
“Rather than focus solely on funding, we must be willing to make the tangible, structural reforms that will allow students to reach their full potential,” DeVos said in her statement…
This unqualified woman is the Secretary of Education. Her only qualifications for the job is that she’s a big time Republican Donor.
HBCU’s part of ‘School Choice’?
Historically Black Colleges and Universities are a direct result of the Institutionalized Racism of this country.
Instead of welcoming former slaves as equal partners in this enterprise called America, post Civil War, this country decided to create American Apartheid – known as Jim Crow.
Blacks – no matter how smart, were forbidden. Were not allowed. Could not even apply to the colleges in this country. You could count on one hand, the number of White Schools that admitted Black students. And, if they did, they only admitted 2 or 3. Period.
Blacks, if they were going to get an education, were going to have to set up their own schools, which is what happened. There was nothing ‘ CHOICE’ about it.
Historically Black Colleges and Universities came about because Black minds needed educating too, and the larger society was not interested in doing that in the least.
That is the beginning of her insult.
The injury comes when she purses her lips about they shouldn’t expect any money coming this Administration.
These schools have been systematically underfunded, with states and the federal government, giving more public education dollars to White schools.
Money helps those other schools, so why not spend money towards HBCU’s.
The entire thing this week was a photo-op, with a meaningless Executive Order, in a meeting with ignorant people who have absolutely no interest in improving the situation for HBCU’s.