DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – U.S Education Secretary Betsy DeVos arrived at Dallas’ Dade Middle School Thursday afternoon, driving by a loud and vocal group of 60-100 protestors carrying signs and megaphones.
“Our kids are not for sale,” the chant reverberated off the entrance doors of the South Dallas school. “She doesn’t care about our children,” one protester yelled.
DeVos was completing the third leg of a four location stop, from North Richland Hills to Dallas, to visit local schools, hold a forum on school violence, and assess career education.
She accepted an invitation from Dallas anti-gang activist Omar Jahwar, who wanted her to see efforts to improve Dade. Jahwar, along with Dallas School Board Trustee Bernadette Nutall, faced criticism for inviting DeVos, known as being a proponent of charter schools and vouchers. “How can you not have someone who is in charge visit and talk to us about your position? It makes no sense to me to freeze her out,”, Jahwar said.
DeVos toured the Center for Technology and Advanced Learning in the Birdville School District. A small group of protestors waited outside the campus. “I think it’s a sham. They want to privatize public education. Betsy DeVos is not qualified for the position,” protestor Linda Moyé said.
DeVos, who went on to participate in a Dallas roundtable discussion including Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa, addressed protestors claims of her education privatization stance.
“We don’t have any effort to privatize any school. What we do want his parents to have the opportunity to find the right environment for their child. We know not every school is right for every child, and people with economics have those choices. We want to ensure all parents have that same opportunity,” she said.