Teachers Revolt Against Betsy DeVos With Online Public Shaming (DETAILS)

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When Betsy DeVos made a trip to visit Jefferson Middle School Academy last week, she was confronted by several protestors who made it blatantly clear they disagree with her appointment as Secretary of Education.

DeVos claimed the teachers were sincere, genuine, and dedicated, telling Townhall, an online conservative publication:

‘They’re waiting to be told what they have to do, and that’s not going to bring success to an individual child.’

‘You have to have teachers who are empowered to facilitate great teaching.’

DeVos endorses private schools, online schooling, and other non-traditional alternatives to public schooling, but has zero experience within the public education system.

Public schools are the means of education for nine out of ten American children. Many educators throughout the country are appalled at DeVos’ mistrust and general ignorance surrounding her opinions on the public education system.

The teachers of Jefferson were uneasy and a bit offended by DeVos’ remarks on their hard work and determination. Friday evening the school used their Twitter account to address several comments made by DeVos.

Before Jefferson let loose and opened fire, they tweeted:

‘We’re about to take her to school.’

The tweetstorm recognized several teachers – Jessica Harris, who built Jefferson’s band program, as well as Ashley Shepard and Britany Locher who teach 1st to 8th grade. Shepard and Locher were recognized by saying:

‘they maintain a positive classroom environment focused on rigorous content, humor, and love. They aren’t waiting to be told what to do.’

The tweets wrapped up the rant by proclaiming:

‘JA teachers are not in a ‘receive mode. Unless you mean we ‘receive’ students at a 2nd grade level and move them to an 8th grade level.’

When requested, there was not an immediate response from the Education Department.

Along side DeVos when she visited Jefferson Academy was Antwan Wilson, D.C. Public Schools Chancellor. Wilson acknowledged the dynamic classroom instruction that was illustrated during their visit.

On Saturday Night in response to DeVos, Wilson announced:

‘I’ve worked in schools for my entire professional life — as a teacher, principal, and superintendent. I have learned from much experience what it takes to prepare students for college success. The teaching and learning at Jefferson will put our students on a path to college, successful careers, and beyond. I see that. Our teachers see that. Our students see that. And our parents see that. Defying expectations takes experience and a lifelong dedication to all students. DCPS is rich with educators who have this experience.’

Caroline Hunt, a Jefferson teacher replied:

‘I find it very interesting that the chancellor saw teachers that were pushing rigorous learning, students asking each other high-level questions and cultivating high-level responses, and teachers who take initiative and give their lives to the education of these children. DeVos saw something so different. … Maybe if DeVos knew more about education she would realize just how amazing the students, teachers and staff are.’

Just five years after making a goal to improve the school it is deemed one of the fastest improving schools in the city’s public school system. Per the Common Core Tests there are less than half of the students meeting grade expectations but that didn’t stop Jefferson from winning the classification of rising D.C. school.

Below is the excellent response from Jefferson Middle School Academy, or @jatrojans:

Watch a clip of the protestors who tried to prevent DeVos from entering the school:

Featured image via GettyImages/ Mario Tama.