- - Wednesday, May 15, 2019


In asserting that, if elected, she would pick a public-school teacher to be secretary of Education, Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth Warren delivered a predictable cheap shot (“Warren promises education secretary with public school teaching experience: ‘No more Betsy DeVos,’” Web, May 13). She called current Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos “the worst Secretary of Education we’ve seen.” According to what criteria? How much good has the U.S. Department of Education done for the quality of schooling? The answer is practically zero. So who is to say one secretary was better or worse than another?

Given that Ms. Warren’s litmus test is K-12 teaching experience, it stands to reason that Terrel Bell, Ted Sanders, Rod Paige and John King Jr. would be her favorites. Of the 11 education secretaries preceding philanthropist and choice-advocate DeVos, those four are the only ones with K-12 teaching experience.

Something Ms. Warren likely does not know, however, is that three of those four were nominees of Republican presidents: Bell (Reagan), Sanders (Bush I) and Paige (Bush II). Mr. King, who served out the final year of Barack Obama’s presidency, is the only Democratic selection who was an ex-K-12 classroom teacher.

Dedication to shuttering the Department of Education and devolving power back to the states and the people ought to be the mission of the next Education secretary, whether he or she has taught in a government school or not.


Senior fellow for education policy

The Heartland Institute

Arlington Heights, Ill.

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