Press Release

AFT President Randi Weingarten Responds to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos Locking Out Parents, Teachers and Students from Department of Education

Public School Parents, Educators and Students Attempted to Deliver 80,000 Comments to DeVos on Needs and Achievements of Public Schools

For Release: 

Thursday, February 8, 2018


Marcus Mrowka
202-531-0689 (cell)

WASHINGTON—Statement of AFT President Randi Weingarten after Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos locked teachers, parents and students out of the Department of Education:

“Secretary DeVos spends a lot of time listening to pollsters and profiteers who are trying to ‘soften’ her image and make money off kids and public schools, but today she locked out students, parents and educators who came to the Department of Education to tell her about what is happening in their public schools.

“We told DeVos we were coming. We asked for an appointment. We had 80,000 comments from teachers, students and parents who just want to be heard and want DeVos to do her job to strengthen and support the great work happening in public schools across the country. She chose once again to reject and ignore the voices of those who educate in, learn in and send their kids to public schools—the schools that 90 percent of America’s children attend.”

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.