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Opinion - Why is Hogan working with the Trump Administration?

  • Charles County,St Mary's County,Calvert County,Prince George's County,Anne Arundel County
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Annapolis, Maryland – Since Friday, Gov. Hogan has teamed up with a Maryland special interest group started by President Trump’s education advisor in an effort to defeat the Protect Our Schools Act—legislation that would stop the Betsy DeVos-style privatization of public education in Maryland.

While the Protect Our Schools Act is supported by teachers, the Maryland PTA, civil rights groups—including the ACLU of Maryland and CASA de Maryland—and leading education scholars, it is only opposed by national school privatization advocates and Gov. Hogan’s administration.

MarylandCAN—formerly led by Jason Botel, now President Trump’s education advisor— has suddenly begun attacking this commonsense legislation to protect and improve Maryland’s public schools, sending a board member to join Gov. Hogan at his press conference on the bill last Friday. MarylandCAN is an affiliate of the controversial, billionaire-funded 50CAN, which recently merged with Michelle Rhee’s highly partisan StudentsFirst.

Gov. Hogan’s interest in privatizing public schools has been echoed by members of his State Board of Education, despite the fact that Marylanders overwhelmingly oppose the Hogan administration’s efforts to work with Trump and DeVos to privatize Maryland’s schools:

More than 80% of Marylanders do not support the privatization of public schools, according to a recent Gonzales Research poll.

Just last week, the Washington Post found that voters want leaders in Annapolis to focus on public education by more than a 3-to-1 ratio over any other issue.

The Protect Our Schools Act ensures that the state cannot take over neighborhood schools and force them to become privately operated charter schools or use federal funding to issue private school vouchers. The Hogan administration, however, plans to veto the bill because it wants to be able to privatize schools—even when a school community doesn’t want that outcome.

“Gov. Hogan insists on working with Donald Trump to privatize Maryland’s public schools even though his own voters—including parents—want the exact opposite,” said Steven Hershkowitz, Maryland State Education Association spokesperson. “Instead of standing with the educators and parents who know our kids best, he’d rather help Betsy DeVos and Donald Trump push their radical agenda to take over and privatize our public schools.

“Gov. Hogan has made it very clear that a NO vote on the Protect Our Schools Act is a YES vote on the Trump-DeVos education agenda.”

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