There are a few candidates running for Education Secretary, but there is a clear frontrunner. We will discuss the merits of Betsy DeVos, Rod Paige, and Margaret Spellings. Let’s also take a look at Miguel Cardona, who is running in a close race with DeVos. The following is an overview of their qualifications, and what we expect from them if they’re confirmed.
Elisabeth Dee-DeVos is an American politician and philanthropist who served as the 11th United States secretary of education from 2017 to 2021. DeVos is well known for supporting school choice, school voucher programs, and charter schools. The former college professor and philanthropist has been a favored choice by conservatives for many reasons.
A millionaire heiress, Betsy DeVos uses her money to influence the system and push a special-interest agenda. Her nomination for Education Secretary represents the complete opposite of President Donald Trump’s promise to drain the swamp. The resulting acrimony will likely shape the conversation about education for years to come. That said, if DeVos is confirmed, it is likely that her selection will lead to a rethink of the department’s priorities.
The appointment of Rod Paige as the Education Secretary of the United States was a long-awaited achievement for many people across the nation. Born in Monticello, Mississippi, Paige went on to complete his undergraduate degree from Jackson State University and graduate school at Indiana University. Although he initially worked in the field of athletics, his career in education eventually led him to higher positions. In the mid-1970s, he was named head football coach at Texas Southern University and worked as an assistant coach and a football coach at the school. The following year, he was drafted into the U.S. Navy and was stationed in San Diego, California. From there, he continued to teach and coach football, and became the head coach of Texas Southern University. Afterward, he became the dean of education and served as a head football coach at the school. He later
Although Paige was the nominee for Education Secretary, he received many negative criticisms for his performance. During his tenure as Education Secretary, he faced criticism over the NCLB Act, which was largely defunded and diverted to homeland security programs. Other political commentators questioned whether Paige played a significant role in developing the NCLB Act, which was a critical piece of education legislation in the United States. However, Paige remained committed to his position and was credited with turning around the public school system in Houston.
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Margaret Spellings is an American politician and education administrator. She was the United States Secretary of Education from 2005 to 2009. Prior to her position as Secretary of Education, she served as the President of the University of North Carolina System, where she oversaw seventeen campuses. Spellings’ education career began as a high school teacher in Durham, North Carolina, and continued to gain national prominence during her time as the President of the University of North Carolina System.
As secretary of education, Spellings has spearheaded educational reform. She has expanded the choice of higher education for students, increased financial incentives for teachers, and announced new rules on special education. In addition, she has led international outreach, forming delegations on behalf of the President of the United States. And she has helped implement landmark education agreements with nations including China, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates. As Secretary of Education, Spellings has worked to improve education and access for all Americans.
Miguel Cardona is an American educator who has served as the United States Secretary of Education since March 1, 2021. He was nominated by President Joe Biden and confirmed by the U.S. Senate by a vote of 64 to 33 on March 1, 2021. He is a Democrat and was previously an educator. He has held a variety of positions in the education field, including assistant secretary of state for higher education and deputy secretary of labor.
The education secretary will inherit a challenging job. Many of the goals of Biden’s Higher Education Policy Commission require action by Congress, including tuition-free public college and a Pell Grant award. Many advocacy groups are expecting Cardona to impose stricter regulations on for-profit colleges. But as he takes over, he will have to deal with Trump-era rules restricting debt forgiveness for students defrauded by for-profit colleges and the investigation of sexual harassment in schools.