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Betsy DeVos Warns Charter Schools Against Becoming ‘The Man’

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos challenged the charter school community, which has long been seen as a vanguard of innovation in education, not to allow itself to turn into just another entrenched bunch of paper pushers. 

“Charters’ success should be celebrated, but it’s equally important not to (quote) ‘become the man.’ …  Many who call themselves reformers have become just another breed of bureaucrats,” DeVos said in a speech here Tuesday to the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools, the nation’s biggest charter school organization. “We don’t need 500-page charter school applications. That’s not progress. That’s fundamentally at odds with why parents demanded charters in the first place. Innovation, iteration and improvement must be a constant in our work.” 

That line could be seen as a veiled shot at charter proponents who have criticized the approach to charter accountabilty that organizations backed by DeVos pushed in Michigan. Supporters of DeVos’ work in the Wolverine State tout what they view as a blooming, diverse charter sector that gives parents a wide array of options.