Jeb Bush praises Trump’s selection for Education secretary

Jeb Bush on Wednesday praised Betsy DeVos, whom President-elect Donald Trump will nominate to serve as Education secretary.

{mosads}The former Republican presidential candidate called DeVos an “outstanding pick” for the post.

“She has a long and distinguished history championing the right of all parents to choose schools that best ensure their children’s success,” Bush said in a statement posted on Facebook.

“Her allegiance is to families, particularly those struggling at the bottom of the economic ladder, not to an outdated public education model that has failed them from one generation to the next.”

Bush, who as governor of Florida created the state’s first charter school, commended DeVos and said he looked forward to her “bold leadership.”

“I cannot think of a more effective and passionate change agent to press for a new education vision, one in which students, rather than adults and bureaucracies, become the priority in our nation’s classrooms,” he said.

Trump in a statement Wednesday called DeVos, a billionaire GOP donor and former head of the Michigan Republican Party, a “brilliant and passionate education advocate.”

DeVos is a vocal advocate of school choice and vouchers to allow parents to send their children to alternative schools. Those policies are strongly opposed by teachers unions. She is the current chairwoman of the American Federation for Children, an education advocacy group pushing school choice policies. 

DeVos originally supported the Common Core educational standards at a state level but opposed them once the became a federal standard, a source familiar with her thinking told The Hill earlier this month.

Bush was among notable Republicans who once backed those standards but similarly changed their views, arguing that they were an example of federal overreach. Bush faced tough questions from conservatives during his own failed presidential bid about his education policies, in particular Common Core.

DeVos and Bush both serve on the board of the Foundation for Excellence in Education, which was founded by Bush.

–This report was updated at 3:46 p.m.

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