East Hartford Public Schools responds to remarks made by Betsy DeVos

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– The East Hartford school district has responded to “disappointing” comments made by the National Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

On Wednesday, during a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing, DeVos discussed East Hartford Public Schools in regards to a student she met named Michael.

Michael had grown up in East Hartford, and according to DeVos, had told her that “students really ruled the classroom” at East Hartford High School. She went on to say that Michael had told her he was “constantly bullied” and even “afraid to walk the hall alone.” He also apparently described the school to DeVos as “nothing more than adult day care … a dangerous daycare.”

On Thursday, East Hartford Public Schools released a statement regarding those comments saying they were “disappointed and puzzled” by how DeVos characterized the school. The full statement from East Hartford Public Schools is below:

“While the constructs of equity and adequacy are realities we face every day, I am disappointed and puzzled by the characterization of East Hartford Public Schools and teachers made by Secretary DeVos. Her depiction of East Hartford Public Schools as a “dangerous daycare” does not align with the incredible and superhuman efforts I see from our teachers and faculty on a daily basis when I visit our schools. Furthermore, I am concerned that the proposed funding solution would further strip vital resources from kids who need it most. We would welcome Secretary DeVos to visit East Hartford, walk our hallways and see how a public school system is actively working to help all kids succeed. We hope this visit could be part of a national conversation about how to best fund and support public education.”

To read the full comments made by DeVos to the American Federation for Children’s National Policy Summit, click here.

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