WASHINGTON—In response to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ announcement of a federal tax credit scholarship proposal, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement:
“Parents, communities and educators want to fund our kids’ futures. They want investment in the services that make a difference in people’s lives, especially our public schools. That’s why we’ve seen unprecedented support for teacher walkouts over the last year, and four bills in Congress in the last few weeks alone that increase funding for school infrastructure, reduce class sizes, expand early childhood education and make classrooms safer.
“And then there’s our secretary of education, who seems only to want to fund the futures of some kids—as long as they opt out of public schools. Betsy DeVos has a long history of attempting to cut funding for public schools: trying to eliminate all summer and after-school programs in President Trump’s first budget while attempting to divert Title I and special education funding to vouchers; trying to get these same tax credits into the Trump tax cut for the wealthy; and now, peddling yet another tax credit for rich people instead of investing in our country’s public schools, which 90 percent of students attend.
“Betsy DeVos has made no secret of her antipathy for public schools and her embrace of private education. She has a right as a private citizen to advocate for a system that creates winners and losers; but as secretary of education, she has one job: to help all of our students access the best education.”