Most people know about Betsy DeVos since she has been in the news lately as she is Donald Trump’s successful appointee to the office of the Secretary of Education. Betsy is the wife of former CEO and President of the Amway Corporation, Dick DeVos, and both Betsy and Dick have been involved in various political causes for most of their lives.Betsy has been active in politics since college and for the past 30 years she has been involved with various party organizations, political action committees, as well as being the chairman of the Michigan Republican Party for six years. Dick ran for Governor in Michigan and is active himself in state and national politics.Betsy believes that much can be done by way of nonprofit organizations. She is chairman of the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation. She also very active as head of a number of other charitable organizations, but is more well-known because of her activities in school reform and school choice.
The school systems in the United States today are in the position of dealing with the “haves” and the “have-nots.” In districts that are solidly supported with funding from property taxes, things “look” good with shiny new buildings and facilities, plenty of teachers and lots of good looking students. However, in school districts where the infrastructure has pulled out, things aren’t going so well.Mostly the inner cities and rural areas are affected by the lack of funding and the inability to offer big salaries to teachers, to here students are trapped just because they live in the wrong zip codes. Betsy, however is optimistic that things are beginning to head in the right direction.
She cites the statistics that show that there are currently about 250,000 students that are involved with 33 different publicly funded programs that offer school choice in 17 different states including the schools in the District of Columbia. And the growth of this movement is happening fast as parents and community leaders see that these programs work because students are receiving good educations. Parents are enthusiastic because they see results with their children learning in better environments.And now that Betsy is Secretary of Education of the United States, we should expect to see even more acceleration in the movement. Betsy and her husband saw the disparity in education that many students faced when their own children started school. Even though the DeVos’s had the funding to send their children to any school they chose to attend, they say many families who could not afford that luxury. So they got involved with helping to create funding through scholarships and vouchers.Education is an asset that we cannot afford to squander and according to Betsy DeVos, she intends to do her best to promote the best ideas and techniques to offer a good education to all students, no matter where they live.