Betsy DeVos can't answer basic education questions


Her halting answers prompted questions about the interview at Monday's White House press briefing.

The tweet linked to a viral clip of DeVos' much-pilloried Sunday interview on "60 Minutes". The result, as Lesley Stahl pointed out to DeVos, is that struggling public schools can fall even further behind as their funding is gutted by departing students. What about those kids?

Stahl pointed out that's happened in MI, where the entire state's school system is struggling. We're in Michigan. This is your home state.

"Yes, well, there's lots of great options and choices for students here", DeVos replied.

DeVos was brought into the Trump administration with no experience as an educator but with a reputation for promoting private and charter schools. DeVos initially tried to dodge the question, but when Stahl doubled down, she said she didn't know. Overall, I, I can't say overall that they have all gotten better. And it's probably not DeVos the students should be calling out.

Lesley Stahl: No, but your argument that if you take funds away that the schools will get better, is not working in MI where you had a huge impact and influence over the direction of the school system here.

DEVOS: I give a lot of credit to the [Stoneman Douglas] students there for really raising their voices, and I think that they are not going to let this moment go by.

Elizabeth Mann, an education expert with the Brookings Institution, said that DeVos' failure to tour struggling schools undermines her credibility as an advocate for the children that they serve.

More news: Gary Neville Backs Jamie Carragher To Keep His Job

Unfortunately for DeVos, the same data suggests that charter schools in MI are doing worse over time. There is no doubt about it.

"Here's what we shared with '60 Minutes, ' which of course they didn't show you: MI, like much of the nation, isn't doing well enough to prepare students".

CBS News' web account focused on DeVos' visit last week to the high school in Florida where 17 people were shot to death, allegedly by a former student.

"Maybe I should. Yes", said the secretary.

'Maybe you should, ' volunteered Stahl.

STAHL: Do you ever say.

DeVos on Sunday said she wasn't sure why many Americans dislike her so much, musing that she is "more misunderstood than anything".

DeVos' comments come not long after the White House unveiled a set of proposals to address gun and school safety. DeVos, saying that too many men were falsely accused, set new rules making it harder for accusers to prove their accusations. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, the number of rape accusations that are false lies somewhere between 2 and 10% of all reports.