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DeVos: School choice opponents are ‘flat-earthers’

DeVos: School choice opponents are ‘flat-earthers’
© Greg Nash

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Monday decried opponents of school choice, calling them "flat-earthers" and saying they have "chilled creativity."

She added that states that go against school-choice innovations will be making a "terrible mistake," CNN reported.

"They will be hurting the children and families who can least afford it," DeVos said, speaking at a school-choice conference in Indianapolis. 

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"If politicians in a state block education choice, it means those politicians do not support equal opportunity for all kids."

She said states should provide the "widest number of quality options."

"If a menu is full of bad options, then do you really have a choice at all?" she said.

"We all fundamentally know one size doesn't fit all — and that we won't accomplish our goals by creating a new federal bureaucracy or by bribing states with their own taxpayers' money," DeVos said Monday.

DeVos has long advocated for federal funding to expand alternatives to traditional public schools and giving parents a choice of schooling options if the nearby public schools are poor.

Opponents say that approach undermines public education.

Earlier this year, DeVos faced criticism for connecting school choice with historically black colleges and universities.

“They are living proof that when more options are provided to students, they are afforded greater access and great quality,” she said in February. “Their success has shown that more options help students flourish.”