U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Tuesday responded to the controversy over a Monday statement in which she was quoted as suggesting that historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) were “real pioneers when it comes to school choice.” DeVos was lampooned for the remark, which critics said does not take into account the fact that HBCUs were founded in response to segregationist policies that prevented African-American students from attending the same schools as white people. “Providing an alternative option to students denied the right to attend a quality school is the legacy of #HBCUs,” DeVos wrote on Twitter. “But your history was born not out of mere choice, but out of necessity, in the face of racism, and in the aftermath of the Civil War,” she added.
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