DeVos regrets not 'forcefully' condemning racism in education policy

DeVos regrets not 'forcefully' condemning racism in education policy
© Greg Nash

Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosDeVos urges school districts to 'think creatively' about reopening amid coronavirus Jill Biden promises if Biden's elected 'no more Betsy DeVos' The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Trump takes on CDC over schools MORE said on Wednesday she regrets not being more forceful in her condemnation of the impact racism has on education in the United States.

She "should have decried much more forcefully the ravages of racism in this country," she said in an interview with The Associated Press.

Controversy surrounds President Trump's education chief over her comments in February calling historically black colleges and universities "real pioneers when it comes to 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.

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DeVos also told the AP that she has advocated on behalf of minority children for decades. 

DeVos's previous assertion that historically black colleges and universities marked an early example of providing school choice drew widespread backlash from African-Americans, who noted that such colleges and universities — known as HBCUs — were established because African-Americans were not welcomed at other institutions. 

DeVos was booed in May while delivering a commencement speech at Bethune-Cookman University, an HBCU in Florida.