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New Teacher Center Statement on DeVos Confirmation by Senate

On behalf of the millions of students we serve, we at New Teacher Center would like to welcome Betsy DeVos – confirmed today to serve as U.S. Secretary of Education – into a vibrant and dynamic education community.

Today’s vote by the United States Senate in support of Ms. DeVos was the culmination of the most divisive confirmation process in history for a U.S. Secretary of Education. To move forward, all parties including Ms. DeVos must work to find common ground where it exists. It is our sincere hope that Ms. DeVos will begin to build trust by listening to members of the educational community, including many public school educators, students and parents who strongly opposed her nomination.

New Teacher Center offered numerous questions about the future of teaching and learning in our nation during the confirmation process. Most of our questions went unanswered. As a result, we are highly uncertain about how changes in educational policy and funding during Ms. DeVos’s tenure will impact states, school districts, and students and their families around the country.

We are unequivocally clear that our focus is on ensuring that educators get the support they need to be effective and that every student, regardless of their zip code, receives a high-quality education. This includes adequate federal commitment to and investments in Every Student Succeeds Act programs that:

  • Develop and support teachers and principals
  • Create equitable access to effective educators and resources for our highest-need students
  • Prioritize evidence-based approaches that contribute to better educational outcomes for all students.

NTC will work across all aisles and will bridge any divide to ensure that this happens for students and educators.

We believe that a strong partnership with the U.S. Department of Education and a set of shared values about the important role public-school educators play in furthering the education of America’s children in communities across our nation are essential to our work as a national nonprofit organization. However, we will speak out when we believe the actions of the U.S. Department of Education and the Congress run counter to the interests of educators and students.

New Teacher Center looks forward to shifting the educational dialogue from one of fear to one of hope. Over the next four years, we will continue to work to recognize, support and elevate the work of American educators to ensure that each and every student receives high-quality instruction in a caring and supportive school environment. Regardless of which way the political winds blow, we will not waiver in our organizational commitment to ensure that every student gets an education that prepares them to be college, career and community ready.

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Yael Bailey