Education Secretary DeVos gives cringeworthy interview to '60 Minutes'

DeVos There is an ‘urgency’ in solving gun violence

STAHL: Why have you become, people say, the most hated Cabinet secretary? He added that he is not sure that DeVos' predecessors in the Obama administration would have done a better job in a similar interview.

"I have not", DeVos confessed.

DEVOS: I have not, I have not, I have not intentionally visited schools that are underperforming. She conceded that MI schools "need to do better" but also that she hasn't gone to visit the bad ones to see what's going on.

It quoted two tweets it presented as being from students.

Lesley Stahl: Have you seen the really bad schools? "How about you actually do your job?" "This is in case the press tries to say something else later".

STAHL: Yeah, but are they the same? "Well, there are certainly pockets where ... students are doing well", DeVos said. Did she never think before this interview that visiting poor performing schools might be a good idea?

In here piece, Stahl acknowledges it's hard to say whether choice schools outperform traditional public schools, and it's unclear what data she was referring to when she said MI "public schools are doing worse than they did".

"The point is that schools should have this tool if they choose to use the tool".

"Also missing from @60Minutes: students at charter schools in Detroit are doing 2x better than their peers".

Stahl then tried to make the case public schools in the USA are improving. "It's better than it was".

"I'm a constituent who supports you, but I don't think calling anyone "dumber than a bag of hammers" is productive or becoming of a Congressman, no matter what", wrote Kirsten Gardner.

DeVos said the United States has comparatively stagnated with test scores, pivoting again to school choice as the solution.

But the case is strong that she is right about the need for reform.

But inflation-adjusted spending per student in American public schools has risen 663 percent, public school staff has increased 386 percent, the number of teachers climbed by 252 percent and the number of administrators by 700 percent. The data is jumpy, but in both math and reading the 2015 scores are below the 2005 scores.

Stahl: No, but your argument if you take funds away, that the schools will get better is not working in MI, where you had a huge impact and influence over the direction of the school system here.

Measures to raise the minimum age for buying guns to 21 from 18 or require background checks for guns bought at gun shows or on the internet will be studied by a commission headed by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, the officials said.

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