Michelle Rhee rules herself out of becoming Trump's education secretary

23rd November 2016 at 13:33
Michelle Rhee, education secretary, Donald Trump
The controversial former chancellor of schools in Washington DC has said she is not pursuing the role of education secretary, but wished Donald Trump success

Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of schools in Washington DC, has ruled herself out as the next education secretary under Donald Trump.

The controversial education reformer, who oversaw a wave of teacher sackings in her time in DC, met with the president elect at the weekend and was touted as one of the favorites for the education secretary role.

But in a series of tweets, Ms Rhee said she was not "pursuing" the job. She did, however, say she had enjoyed her meeting with Trump and wished him well with his education reforms.

"In light of the speculation about the Secretary of Education role, I wanted to clarify my position and what's best for America's students," she wrote.

"I am not pursuing a position with the Administration but I have appreciated the opportunity to share my thoughts on education with the PEOTUS (president elect of the United States). Interestingly many colleagues warned me against doing so. They are wrong. Our job as Americans is to want him to succeed.

"Wishing for his failure would be wanting the failure of our millions of American children who desperately need a better education."

She added: "I am hopeful about the opportunity to find common ground on this important issue of education and will do whatever I can to be supportive."

After meeting with Mr Trump at the weekend, the incoming president's transition team released a statement saying that he and Ms Rhee had discussed increasing competition in the school system and widening the scope of merit pay for teachers.

Mr Trump also met with Betsy DeVos, chair of the American Federation for Children, which promotes charter schools and private school vouchers. Their conversation "focused on the Common Core mission, and setting higher national standards and promoting the growh of schools choice across the nation," Mr Trump's team said.

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