Betsy DeVos releases statement on HBCUs, Twitter points out shes clueless black history education betsy devos 1

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Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is being dragged on Twitter over a statement she released after attending a listening session with historically black college and university leaders at the White House.

In a letter issued to the public, DeVos, who’s confirmation as head of Department of Education required a historic vice presidential tie breaker in the senate, said that it is the Trump administration’s “priority” to “develop opportunities for communities that are often the most underserved.”

“We must be willing to make the tangible, structured reforms that will allow students to reach their full potential,” the statement added.

Things took a left, however, after Secretary DeVos seemed to suggest that the founding of HBCUs was about “school choice,” when in actuality, a post-slavery, Jim Crow era didn’t allow African Americans to attend American schools, and compelled them to found their own institutions.

That, many argued, is not about choice but survival, and if anything, shows HBCUs had no choice at all.

“[HBCUs] started from the fact that there were too many students in America who did not have equal access to education. They saw that the system wasn’t working, that there was an absence of opportunity, so they took it upon themselves to provide the solution,” she wrote.

“HBCUs are real pioneers when it comes to school choice. They are living proof that when more options are provided to students, they are afforded greater access and greater quality.”

DeVos’ refusal to acknowledge that HBCUs were founded in part because of racism, or at least her ignorance to it, became a running joke on Twitter.

See some of the reactions below.

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