Devos: I Should Have Decried 'Ravages Of Racism' Much More Forcefully

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She kicked off a firestorm of controversy in February when she said Historically Black Colleges and Universities were 'real pioneers when it comes to school choice.' DeVos is a Republican billionaire donor from MI who has been a staunch proponent of school choice.

On Wednesday, DeVos acknowledged that in the past "racism was rampant and there were no choices" for African-Americans to pursue higher education.

"Throughout this approval process, it has been exciting to see how each state has chosen to serve its students through the flexibility afforded to them under ESSA", said Secretary DeVos.

DeVos, a MI billionaire and GOP donor, was a major advocate for school choice policies before being named secretary previous year.

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos today announced the approval of Nevada, New Jersey and New Mexico's respective consolidated state plans under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

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DeVos now says she should have done more to reach out to the Black community around the country to explain her agenda.

"I've had these conversations with some of the African-American organizations that represent higher education, but probably not as explicitly as I am right now", DeVos said.

In an interview with the Associated Press, the grossly under-qualified secretary sounded slightly more enlightened than she did six months ago. University of Pennsylvania education professor Marybeth Gasman isn't convinced.

Yep, that comment. Someone must have tried to correct DeVos' understanding of race relations in the US because she's now retracted the statement.

Minorities in higher education is, of course, a hot topic right now.

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DeVos told AP that the Education Department was not involved in the Justice Department's inquiry into an allegation of race-based discrimination brought by dozens of Asian-American groups against Harvard University.

At America's elite private colleges, many of which have drawn criticism over race-conscious admission policies, incoming classes have become increasingly diverse in recent years.

Asked by AP reporters whether race should play a role in college admissions, DeVos said it is already a factor.

"Today's news is the culmination of so much hard and thoughtful work by many people throughout the state", State Superintendent Steve Canavero said in a statement.

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