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Leading Disability Organization Reiterates Offer to Facilitate Informational Meetings for Betsy DeVos
Story Number is : 021217100
Ruderman Family Foundation

In anticipation of the Betsy DeVos confirmation hearing tomorrow for Secretary of Education, the Ruderman Family Foundation, a national leader in disability inclusion, reiterates its offer to facilitate informational meetings for DeVos after she showed unfamiliarity with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) at her Senate nomination hearing last month.

"The Ruderman Family Foundation is deeply concerned that Betsy DeVos’s responses at her December Senate confirmation hearing to be the next United States Secretary of Education demonstrated an unfamiliarity with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA),” said Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “IDEA is a federal law that guarantees access to free and appropriate public education for students with disabilities. Should DeVos be confirmed as Secretary of Education, it is crucial for her role to be not only aware of IDEA and its stipulations, but to fully embrace the right of students with disabilities to be included in public education."

During the hearing in December, DeVos said that implementation of civil rights laws for students with disabilities should be left to the states, and when questioned about her apparent lack of knowledge about the IDEA replied that she “may have confused it.”

“Inclusion is crucially important in education settings,” Ruderman continued. “Inclusive education sets the ground for inclusion in the work force and in the community in general, allowing people with disabilities to lead engaged, productive lives and allowing our society to flourish through the contributions of all its members.”

“This is why the Ruderman Family Foundation hereby offers to facilitate a meeting between Ms. DeVos and a group of leading education experts so that Ms. DeVos may be better informed and better prepared for her role as Education Secretary, should she be confirmed.”

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