Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was unable to enter the back entrance of Jefferson Middle School Academy Friday morning due to a group of protesters that blocked the entryway. According to the Washington Post’s Emma Brown, Devos was met by a group people chanting “shame” and was forced to retreat to her government vehicle.
Devos later used another entrance and began her 10 a.m. event with new D.C. School Chancellor Antwan Brown and other school officials. Details of that meeting were unavailable as the event was closed to the media.
The demonstration is being seen as a sign of the unchanged and fierce scrutiny and controversy surrounding her Senate confirmation early last week. Devos has little to no experience in public education and made significant monetary contributions to the campaigns of over half of the Senators that voted in her favor.
Devos later released a statement: “I respect peaceful protest and I will not be deterred in executing the vital mission of the Department of Education,” she said. “No school door in America will be blocked from those seeking to help our nation’s school children.” Read more here.